Friday. It’s sort of misleading. More than once I’ve been told if I eat fish it’s
not a true Meatless Friday and, thinking about it, that’s kind of right. I
think it’s much more a function of my Catholic grandpa’s conception of “meatless”
that I ever came to think of fish as part of Meatless Friday.
use the term “meatless” for true vegetarian meals and mark my Lent meals as
such. Cool? Groovy!
That being said, about 10 p.m. last night I remembered today was a “Lenten
Friday” and, as such, I was abstaining from chicken, beef, pork, etc. I eat
fish, seafood, veggies, whole grains and dairy on those days.
are TONS of meatless (and Lent) options. BUT. I am trying to stick to my budget
better so I decided to whip something up. (Yes, at 10 p.m. last night!)
restaurant called Ikaros in North East Baltimore. Baltimore is known for having
very rich, cultural neighborhood traditions. This part of Baltimore is
informally known as “Greek Town” and there are some great restaurants with
Stuffed Zucchini Squash! (There was a name in Greek which I could probably
attempt since Greek is similar to Russian and, fun fact, Nik can READ – not always
understand – perfect Russian and the alphabets are similar BUT…I respect my
Greek brothers and sisters way too much to try. K? Moving on.) It had ground
beef, Greek spices and rice and the zucchini was HUGE. It was a few meals for even
dish so much as imitate it. Mine isn’t Greek. It doesn’t subscribe to any particular
tradition, although if I were pinned down I would probably (and inaccurately)
say it’s more French provincial. But enough of my imagination. Let’s get to the
- 1 zucchini (mine was about 7 inches)
- 1 tsp. extra-virgin olive oil
- 2 tbsp. chopped red bell pepper
- 2 tbsp. chopped green pepper
- 2 tbsp. diced onion
- 1 tsp. minced garlic
- Salt, pepper, your favorite spices (I used Herbs de
Provence, but you can also use Greek seasoning or any other seasoning you like)
- 2 tbsp. quinoa (I used red quinoa – tastes the same to me)
- 2/3 c. water
- 4 oz. tilapia filet (or other white fish filet of your
- 1 tbsp. butter
- 1 tbsp. soy flour
- ¾ c. milk (I used skim)
- 1 tsp. garlic
- 2 tsp. lemon juice
- 3 tbsp. goat cheese (or other sharp cheese of your liking)
- Salt and pepper, to taste
length-wise. Use a knife to score a ¼ inch channel down the middle of the
zucchini then scoop out the flesh with a spoon. Set on a baking sheet and sprinkle
Add garlic and spices, stir and cook an additional minute.
adding water. Top with fish and cover the skillet.
rings have popped out of the quinoa, signaling it is done. You want to cook
your quinoa extra tender since it’s going to go in the oven.
together, spoon the filling into the channel of the zucchini, then bake at 350
for about 15 minutes or until zucchini has softened.
melt the butter. Add the flour and mix until a dough-like paste forms.
mixture. Bring the mixture to a boil. It will froth and begin to thicken.
until it bubbles, then reduce heat to low, cover and allow to simmer until the
zucchini is done.
VERDICT: I loved it! Somehow the dish tasted like there was bacon in it but there was not! It was savory and fragrant and…not a bowl of tuna! (Which is what I was going for. I wanted a lunch that felt like lunch.) I love the stuffed zucchini concept so I’m going to play around with it some more.
If you’ve made one, share how you stuffed yours!