Cheese & Sausage Zucchini Boats

Serves 6

Recipe by: Jackie Collins

INGREDIENTS

  • 3 fairly large uncurved zucchini
  • 3 tbsp unsalted butter
  • 1 medium onion, finely chopped
  • 1 cup long-grain white rice
  • 2 tsp ground coriander
  • 1 tsp ground cumin
  • 2 cups chicken stock
  • 2 to 3 cooked chorizo sausages (preferably Palacios), chopped into ¼-inch pieces
  • 1 cup homemade or favourite bottled chunky tomato sauce
  • ¾ to 1 cup freshly grated Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese
  • 1 cup grated Monterey Jack cheese
  • 2 tbsp chopped flat-leaf parsley or cilantro
  • 3 to 4 quartered cherry tomatoes

INSTRUCTIONS

  1. Place the whole, unpeeled zucchini in a large pot of rapidly boiling water. Cover and let boil for 15 minutes.
  2. Drain the zucchini and set aside to cool.
  3. Melt the butter over medium heat, stir in the chopped onion and sweat it for 5 minutes. Add the rice, coriander and cumin and stir until every grain is coated with the hot butter. Pour in the stock or water and the chorizo and bring just to a boil. Cover tightly, lower the heat to keep the rice at a simmer and cook for 13 minutes.
  4. When the rice is done, and while it’s still hot, stir in the tomato sauce and the Parmigiano- Reggiano. Set the mixture aside to cool.
  5. Cut each zucchini in half lengthwise and, using a small spoon, scoop out and discard the seeds. Then scoop out the flesh, reserving about half, and leaving a shell in each zucchini about ½-inch thick. Sprinkle the shells with a little kosher salt and invert them in a sieve to drain for 10 minutes. Chop the reserved zucchini flesh and add it to the cooled rice mixture. Taste the rice carefully, and season with salt, pepper and probably additional grated cheese, if needed.
  6. Place the zucchini shells on a small baking sheet and pat them dry with paper towels. Fill them with the rice mixture, sprinkle with the grated Jack cheese, and press the quartered cherry tomatoes into the rice mixture at attractive intervals. Run the zucchini boats under the broiler, just to melt the cheese, 1 to 2 minutes, then sprinkle with chopped parsley. Serve at room temperature.
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