Sausage Stuffed Zucchini

I never know what to do with leftover sausage after I make my sausage-apple risotto dish as I did a week ago. I usually end up eating the other two pieces of  Italian sausage at some point throughout the week either with breakfast or as a sandwich.

But, I recently remembered my mom making sausage stuffed zucchini. So, as has become habit over the past year, I called and asked her to email me the recipe.

The instructions listed below is for a family of four, but I was cooking for one. If you are only cooking for one, you have to adapt slightly. You won’t even use up one whole piece of Italian sausage. Maybe 3/4 depending on the size of the zucchini. I just cooked it all and made the mixture as if I were going to use the entire thing. I didn’t realize it was too much until I was pouring it into the zucchini boats. Oops.

I also did a tsp of basil and a tsp of thyme as opposed to 1/4 tsp of thyme as my mom’s directions call for. However, I didn’t use parsley at all because I didn’t want to buy a huge thing of parsley for one tiny recipe. Some things are just not sold to benefit single people.

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Straight from the kitchen of Mom…

4 medium zucchini, cut in 1/2 lengthwise(about 1 1/2 #)
8 oz Italian sausage, hot or sweet
1 medium size yellow onion, chopped
3 Tbsp minced parsley
2 tsp dried basil
1/4 tsp marjoram or thyme
1/4 cup fine dry bread crumbs
1/4 cup parmesan
1/4 tsp each salt and pepper
1 egg

Place the zucchini halves in a large saucepan, weigh them down with a small plate so they will cook evenly, cover with boiling water. Over moderately low heat,simmer for 6-8 minutes or until zucchini are almost tender. Drain and refresh under cold running water.

With a spoon, scoop the pulp from the zucchini, leaving a 1/4 inch border all around. Chop the pulp coarsely, transfer to a sieve
and press it with the back of a spoon to extract excess liquid.Set pulp aside. Invert the zucchini on paper towels to drain.

Saute sausage in skillet for 5 minutes. Add the onion, parsley,and spices, cook until the onion is soft and the meat browned. Remove from the heat, add the bread crumbs, 2 Tbsp of the cheese, salt and pepper.

At this point the stuffing can be cooled to room temp and then stored in the refrigerator. Store stuffing, zucchini pulp separately and the boats separately. Refrigerate in a tightly sealed container for up to 24 hrs. (SIDE NOTE FROM THE DAUGHTER: You don’t have to wait 24 hours. My mom just included this part in case you want to make part of it in advance. I didn’t realize this until I said something on the phone about it being a 24 hour process. I was then enlightened.)

Preheat the oven to 350. Mix the egg with the stuffing and pulp and fill the boats with equal amounts of the mix. Place the boats in a 13x9x2 baking dish and sprinkle with the remaining cheese. Bake uncovered for 35 to 45 minutes or until heated thru and the filling is lightly browned.

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This is now tied with the pumpkin bread for favorite new recipe.

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