OVEN-BAKED ZUCCHINI BOATS (BARCHETTE DI ZUCCHINE RIPIENE AL FORNO)

      Get ready to prepare the healthiest and most delicate creation ever! 
    Though I admit that the assembling of this dish is not stress free, it is too inspiring and delicious not to share with everyone. Yes, there is quite a bit of chopping and dicing involved, but I find it to be a great go-to recipe, when I am in need of unwinding from the daily routine and are in need of providing a healthy choice for my family. Making sure that all of the ingredients come together harmoniously actually gives me something to concentrate on, and it makes me feel accomplished as I create something beautiful such as these tasty barchette.
    This dish is so variegated, that once you know what flavor you are looking for, you can truly combine any of your favorite ingredients and make it in all different ways each time. 
    (Make sure you share your comments in the space below, 
and let me know what ingredients you chose, and how it came out.)
 Buon Appetito!
OVEN-BAKED ZUCCHINI BOATS 
(BARCHETTE DI ZUCCHINE RIPIENE AL FORNO)  🍽
(Serves 6 people)
Ingredients: 
  • 3 large fresh organic zucchini
  • 1 can of your favorite GF beans drained
  • 2 small potatoes
  • 1 cup of chopped fresh baby kale or spinach
  • 2 cups of your favorite melting cheese (I like to use aged cheddar, and mix it with yellow cheddar for more color)
  • EVO
  • Butter
  • 1 tsp of nut meg
  • 1 tsp of chili powder
  • 1 tsp of ginger powder
  • 2 small cloves of garlic
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • Some basil and some rosemary leaves 
  • Optional: you can substitute any of the veggies with mushrooms, pepper, fresh tomatoes, etc. (Or use ground beef as a base that will need to be precooked separately in a frying pan)

Let's get chopping...
  • Coat an oven safe glassware with some butter and a sprinkle of EVO
  • Cut the ends off of the zucchini and half them long-way
  • Remove the center of the zucchini to look like a boat (making sure you leave a thick layer of skin around the hole
  • Chop the pulp you have removed from the zucchini into small cubes, and set aside in a dish
  • Place each "boat" in the baking-ware skin down
  • Chop the garlic finely, and add to the plate with the zucchini pulp (we are going to call this the stuffing)
  • Chop the Kale or spinach and the basil into thin strips, add to the stuffing with the spices, salt, pepper, and a drizzle of EVO 
  • Grate 1 cup of the cheese
  • Add the beans to the mix, stir, and set aside
  • Peel and slice the potatoes in very thin rounds or halves
  • Arrange the potatoes to coat the bottom of the "barchette" (pron. bar-ket-teh - little boats)
  • Sprinkle some EVO and salt on the potatoes
  • Cover the potatoes with the stuffing by using a spoon or your fingers to press everything gently into the hole
  • Lay the cheese slices over the stuffing of each zucchina, and sprinkle some rosemary leaves
Let's get baking...

  • Preheat the oven to 400F
  • Pour 3 tbsp of water onto the bottom of the glassware
  • Cover the baking-ware with a sheet of aluminum foil (I do not like the aluminum to be directly in contact with the food, so I place it on loosely)
  • Cook for 20-25 minutes
  • Uncover, and keep baking for another 15-20 minutes, or until the zucchini feel soft to the touch of a fork
  • Serve hot or refrigerate 
Buon Appetito!

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Comments

Margaret said…
The variation with ground beef used to be one our staples, but lately I tend more toward the all vegetable version. I think that I am becoming an every-other-day vegetarian!
Margaret said…
What would you serve with it? That always stumps me when making a "one-dish" meal like this.
@ Margaret: Honestly if you have two or thee of these barchette, they are very filling, but you can also have them as a side and have a nice protein with them ;)