Stuffed Zucchini

Stuffed Zucchini

2 tablespoons vegetable oil, divided

1 pound ground beef

Salt and pepper to taste

1 large onion, diced

1 carrot, peeled and grated

1 green bell pepper, cored, seeded and diced

1 (10-ounce) can cream of tomato soup

2 or 3 fresh tomatoes, diced

1/2 teaspoon minced fresh parsley

1/2 teaspoon minced fresh chives

1 shallot, diced

1 garlic clove, minced

4 medium unpeeled zucchini, 8 to 9 inches long

1/2 cup grated mozzarella cheese

In a 10-inch skillet, heat 1 tablespoon of the oil over medium-high heat. Add ground beef and saute, breaking it up with a wooden spoon, until no longer pink, about 3 to 4 minutes. Season with salt and pepper as it cooks. Remove from heat with a slotted spoon and set aside.

Pour fat and juices from the pan and discard. Using the same skillet, heat remaining 1 tablespoon oil over medium heat. Add the onion, carrot and pepper and saute until onion is translucent, about 4 minutes. Return cooked meat to the pan and add the soup, tomatoes, parsley, chives, shallot and garlic. Simmer for 4 minutes and set aside.

Slice zucchini lengthwise and scoop out half of the pulp. (Pulp can be frozen and saved for soup.) Arrange zucchini in a shallow oven-to-table dish. Spoon meat mixture into the cavities. Top each stuffed zucchini with mozzarella.

Place zucchini under the broiler until cheese melts, about 1 minute, watching closely so it doesn’t burn.

Makes 4 main-course servings


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