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Stuffed Zucchini

  • 45 minutes
  • Easy
  • Appetizers
These satisfying zucchini are stuffed with ricotta and pine nuts and served with a flavorful olive and caper sauce.

Ingredients: Per 4 servings

  • 1 lb zucchini
  • 1 onion
  • 3 oz ricotta cheese
  • ¾ oz pine nuts
  • 2 tablespoons Extra Virgin Olive Oil
  • salt to taste
  • 7 oz tomato sauce
  • ½ cup dry white wine
  • 2 tablespoons ligurian olives (small, black brine cured olives)
  • 1 handful capers

Preparation:

Cut off the ends of the zucchini, them cut them in half to make two small logs. Cook by either steaming or boiling in a pot of boiling, salted water for about 5 minutes.

Once cooked, drain, and cut them lengthwise. Use a teaspoon to dig out the pulp, giving the zucchini the shape of small boats.

Heat a tablespoon of oil in a pan, add half a finely chopped onion, and as soon as it is lightly browned, add half of the pulp of the zucchini and sauté for 2 or 3 minutes. Then add salt, remove from heat and mix with the ricotta and 2/3rds of the pine nuts, roasted and chopped.

Stuff the zucchini with the filling and decorate with remaining whole pine nuts.

To prepare the sauce:

Place another pan over medium heat, with the remaining tablespoon of oil and, as soon as it is hot, add the other half of the onion, sliced, but not too thinly.  Then add the tomato sauce and season with salt. Mix with a wooden spoon, adding the white wine. Let cook for 10 minutes.

Then, remove the sauce from the heat, add the capers, previously desalted by passing them under running water, and sliced, pitted olives. Mix.

Pour the sauce into a serving dish, place stuffed zucchini on top and serve immediately.

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Take the opportunity to enjoy these products in their native land, surrounded by sea breezes and beautiful bays.
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Food history

Despite their difference in size, pumpkins and zucchini are actually different varieties of the same plant, which has great ability to adapt and has spread throughout the world.
What distinguishes the two varieties is their time of harvest: the first, are harvested when fully ripe, while the latter when they are still immature, and their skin is still soft.

Although the pumpkin plant was one of the few to be widespread on both sides of the Atlantic Ocean since ancient times, the particular variety of zucchini that Italians now eat was introduced in Europe in the fifteenth century after the discovery of America by Christopher Columbus.
Because the new zucchini were similar to the pumpkins already growing in Europe, they were among the first vegetables from the New World to spread to the eastern shore of the Atlantic, so much so that in the sixteenth century, news of their cultivation and preparation was reported in several texts.

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