|For the zucchini boats|
|For the quinoa and tomato filling|
|5 ½ oz|
|3 ½ oz|
|¼ tsp, ground|
For the zucchini boats
Cut the zucchini in half lengthwise and use a teaspoon to scoop out the flesh. Set the zucchini flesh to the side to use for the filling.
The author recommends using smaller zucchini for this dish as these are easier to work with and don’t break as easily.
Coat the inside and outside of the zucchini with olive oil.
For the quinoa and tomato filling
Quarter the cherry tomatoes and finely chop the basil.
If the cherry tomatoes are smaller, you can simply cut them in half.
Finely chop the zucchini flesh, transfer to a bowl, and combine with the cooked quinoa, the cherry tomatoes, and basil.
Add the olive oil and season to taste with salt and pepper.
Season according to your personal taste preferences.
Grill the zucchini boats on each side for 3–4 minutes.
For this step, you can use either a grill or the grill function in the baking oven.
Remove the zucchini from the grill, stuff with the quinoa and tomato filling, and drizzle balsamic vinegar on top.
The author Michaela Marmulla uses Crema di Balsamico, which has a thicker consistency than regular balsamico.
Servings: The recipe shown here for 8 servings is enough if you are serving the zucchini boats as a side. If you want them to be the entrée, then the recipe will make enough for 3–4 people. However, you can vary the recipe with one simple addition to make it stretch further. See “Alternative preparation” for more information.
Quinoa: Quinoa is a pseudograin that originated in the South American Andes and is in the same plant family as red beets and spinach. The vitamin content and nutritional value is about the same as rice. However, the protein content is much higher and quinoa contains larger amounts of polyunsaturated fatty acids (and fewer carbohydrates). Quinoa also contains significantly more minerals and about twice as much iron and 50 percent more vitamin E than wheat. It has a nice nutty flavor.
Cherry tomatoes: Cherry tomatoes are smaller, firmer, and sweeter than traditional tomatoes. They can be red, green, yellow, or black. A red cherry tomato is ripe when it has a vibrant color and the skin is firm. Cherry tomatoes keep for up to 14 days. It is best to store them at 13 to 18 °C and a relative humidity of 80 to 95 %. Many people think it is best to store tomatoes in the refrigerator, but this actually causes them to lose a significant amount of their flavor.
Thickening balsamic vinegar: If you don’t have Crema di Balsamico on hand, you can also make your own by thickening balsamic vinegar. Locust bean gum works well for this. Alternatively, you can use agave syrup, dandelion syrup, or honey. However, it should be noted that honey is an animal product and therefore strictly speaking not vegan. Honey is in a gray area and its quality depends on the humane treatment of the bees, including careful honey extraction without smoking and an appropriate substitution of the honey to feed the bees. It is therefore up to each person whether he or she chooses to eat honey.
Grilling: Given the right weather conditions, this is a great dish to prepare ahead of time and then bring with you to a barbecue to put on the grill.
Side dish or entrée: This stuffed zucchini recipe that makes 8 servings is perfect as a delicious side dish on a festive summer evening. It is also easy to vary this recipe and make a quinoa salad. Simply buy three times the amount of filling ingredients listed and 2 avocados. Cut the avocados into small cubes and add to the quinoa and tomato filling. If desired, you can also make the salad spicier by adding a small chilli pepper or chili powder. And if you are already preparing a larger amount of quinoa, we also have another recipe that uses cooked quinoa that we think you will like: Quinoa Nut Muesli.