My Italian Mother-In-Law Stuffed Zucchini Recipe

This stuffed zucchini recipe is the one I learned directly from my mother-in-law. Yes, THAT kind of legendary recipes! It is not the kind of recipe I prepare everyday. It “contains” frying, what I rarely do, but sometimes we just feel like cooking traditional dishes…and here I am. I prepared it for lunch today.

In my husband’s hometown (and I believe in many other places in Italy), women wait for the seasonal

zucchini to prepare this recipe, as it needs hard and huge zucchini. I prepared it today and we’re not yet in its season: the important is to use big zucchini, the most linear you can find. If you want to prepare this recipe with smaller (and softer) zucchini, cut it in the horizontal way instead of how I explain here.

I learned to prepare this recipe as soon as I got married. It seemed like a family’s special dish that I couldn’t ignore :-) .

The “problem” began when my father-in-law, who had a vegetable garden, began to bring me big baskets of zucchini and eggplants. I do not like to throw away food and his vegetables were fresh and genuine, planted and cared directly by him…and so I always accepted with pleasure and…cooked them all!

I used to prepare this stuffed zucchini recipe multiplied 4 or 5 times (even more) and freeze it. The same for eggplants.

The result? After that period, I didn’t cook it anymore for years… now I began again, but in smaller quantities :-)

To prepare the quantities shown in this recipe I spent about 1 hour and a half in the kitchen. Consider that while it was into the oven I was cleaning the kitchen ;-) .

Here you can see the zucchini I used – not so big, but hard and linear.

stuffed zucchini recipe

Wash and peel them using a potato peeler or a sharp knife.

stuffed zucchini recipe

Cut each zucchini in 3 or 4 cylinders (depending on the zucchini length). Cut some thin slices (as you can see on the right side of the photo) that will serve as tops. Using a teaspoon, empty each cylinder.

stuffed zucchini recipe

stuffed zucchini recipe

 

stuffed zucchini recipe

Take a deep pan, add abundant oil, warm it and then fry the cylinders and the tops.

stuffed zucchini recipe

Mince the onion and the garlic clove.

stuffed zucchini recipe

In another pan, add olive oil and fry the onion with the garlic for a while and then add the inner part you took of the zucchini to empty it. Lower the gas and let it cook. When it’s done, add one egg, the breadcrumbs and the Parmesan cheese. Mix it well quickly and turn off the gas.

Place the tops at the bottom of each cylinder as you can see below, and fill each zucchini to its half, helping yourself with a teaspoon.

stuffed zucchini recipe

stuffed zucchini recipe

Cut the mozzarella in small pieces/cubes and add some to each zucchini cylinder.

stuffed zucchini recipe

Complete with more stuffing until you finish it. Cover them all with tomato sauce and sprinkle some grated Parmesan cheese on top.

stuffed zucchini recipe

Cook in preheated oven for about 30 minutes or until the top brownies a little.

stuffed zucchini recipe

Here in Sardinia, we eat it with wet Sardinian Bread, but you can use any other bread you have or prefer.

stuffed zucchini recipe

Stuffed Zucchini Recipe

A traditional recipe for stuffed zucchini

01:15
00:40
00:35

2 servings

Ingredients

  • for zucchini
  • 3 big zucchini
  • oil to fry ( about 3 cups as you have to immerse the cylinders until its half or close to it)
  • 3 tablespoons of extra virgin olive oil
  • 1/2 onion
  • 1 garlic clove
  • 1 egg
  • 3 tablespoons of grated Parmesan cheese
  • grated Parmesan cheese to sprinkle on top
  • 5 tablespoons of breadcrumbs
  • 1 tablespoon of fresh minced parsley
  • salt
  • 125 gr of Italian mozzarella
  • for tomato sauce
  • 1, 2 kg ( 3 cans) of peeled tomatoes
  • 1/4 onion
  • 1 garlic clove
  • salt

Directions

  1. Prepare the tomato sauce adding the ingredients to a deep pan and turning on the gas.
  2. Let it cook while you prepare the zucchini.
  3. After half an hour, pass it through a foodmill and reserve (you can even take out the onion and garlic and use it as it is. Passing through a foodmill will only render it more homogeneous).
  4. Wash and peel the zucchini using a potato peeler or a sharp knife.
  5. Cut each zucchini in 3 or 4 cylinders (depending on the zucchini length).
  6. Cut some thin slices (as you can see on the right side of the photo) that will serve as tops.
  7. Using a teaspoon, empty each cylinder.
  8. Take a deep pan, add abundant oil, warm it and then fry the cylinders and the tops.
  9. Mince the onion and the garlic clove.
  10. Preheat the oven to 200°C/400°F.
  11. In another pan, add olive oil and fry the onion with the garlic for a while and then add the inner part you took of the zucchini to empty it. Lower the gas and let it cook.
  12. When it’s done, add one egg, the breadcrumbs and the Parmesan cheese. Mix it well quickly and turn off the gas.
  13. Put some tomato sauce on a pyrex or oven pan you want to use.
  14. Place each zucchini cylinder on the sauce.
  15. Place the tops at the bottom of each cylinder and fill each zucchini to its half, helping yourself with a teaspoon.
  16. Cut the mozzarella in small pieces/cubes and add some to each zucchini cylinder.
  17. Complete with more stuffing until you finish it.
  18. Cover them all with tomato sauce and sprinkle some grated Parmesan cheese on top.
  19. Cook in preheated oven for about 30 minutes or until the top brownies a little.
  20. Serve with wet Sardinian bread or any other bread you may prefer.

Tips

  • Buon appetito!

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