Stuffed Summer Squash

Dinner:  June 25, 2007

When my dad had a garden back home in Detroit, he grew zucchini and made a wonderful stuffed version with cheese, Italian sausage and lots of garlic and onions. Mike brought home a lovely avocado squash a few days ago, and its size and shape made my thoughts turn immediately to stuffed squash.

I’m always looking for good meatless entrees which don’t rely so heavily on pastas or other starches, so I thought I would stuff the squash with a mixture of chopped sauteed veggies and a bit of cheese to bind it all together. What I ended up with was hearty but light, and so tasty it is definitely going into regular rotation while summer squashes are in season.

Stuffed Summer Squash

One or two large summer squash, halved lengthwise and cored
One bunch spinach leaves (probably 4-6 cups raw)
1 cup chopped spring onion
Extra virgin olive oil
Kosher salt
Red chile flakes
1 egg
1 tsp. each dried marjoram and basil
1 cup fresh breadcrumbs
4 oz. sheep’s milk ricotta (can substitute well-drained regular ricotta)
1 cup grated Pecorino Romano cheese, plus additional to top squash

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Season the squash halves with salt and rub with a little bit of olive oil. Place cut side up in a baking dish and set aside.

Warm a couple of tablespoons of olive oil over medium heat in a sauté pan. Add the chopped onion and a pinch of salt and cook until beginning to soften. Add a couple of pinches of chile flakes, cook until fragrant, and then add the spinach and another pinch of salt. Toss well, cover the pan, and allow to cook until wilted. Remove the spinach and onions from the pan, squeezing out any excess liquid. Set the mixture on a cutting board and coarsely chop.

In a bowl, beat one egg with the dried marjoram and basil. Add the spinach mixture and toss. Add the breadcrumbs, ricotta and Pecorino and toss until well combined. Taste and adjust seasonings if necessary. Stuff mixture into squash halves, top with additional grated Pecorino, and bake uncovered for 20-25 minutes.

2 thoughts on “Stuffed Summer Squash

  1. It’s the first time to hear avocado squash. I like to eat it in summer. In Japan, some people grilled them till the skin get burned and put them into cold water with ice. and peel the skin by hands. and put some grated ginger on it and pour little soy-sauce. One of popular and traditional dishes. I don’t know how the other people like though, I like it.
    the other popular way is that tempura, nimono(simmered vegetable or fish or meat) here.

  2. Jennifer Hess says:

    Hikalu, that sounds wonderful! We have a wonderful purveyor at the Greenmarket here who grows a lot of Asian vegetables, and we loved this avocado squash so we will definitely get it again and try grilling it as you described.

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