Have you ever made that motorboat sound with you lips—either pretending to be a motorboat or tickling the tummy of a toddler? Well, that’s not the kind of boats Cheap Bastid is referring to here. I’m taking about zucchini boats.
Thanks to the Tauman Family Blog for this photo.
We’ve been trying to get more vegetables in our diet. (Yeah I know that sounds boring to almost everybody but a vegetarian). The reasons are twofold—it’s healthier and it’s cheaper. And, of course, Cheap Bastid always likes cheaper.
I stumbled across a recipe and picture recently on Pinterest (yeah, I “pin) for Zucchini Boats and was intrigued. So last night I decided to fix them after making sure that I had zucchini and grape or cherry tomatoes on hand.
These are really simple to make and can be a great vegetable “side” dish, cut into quarters for finger food at a party or buffet or can even be a main dish for a vegetarian meal.
Last night’s effort was my first attempt and the pictures might not be “foo-foo foodie” beautiful and the presentation will improve the next time I make these. But, here’s my take on the recipe:
Cheap Bastid's Zucchini Boats
• 2 zucchinis
• 20 grape tomatoes
• Mozzarella cheese
• Crumbled Feta cheese
• 1/3 cup Bread crumbs or cracker crumbs
• Salt and pepper
• Olive or canola oil
Get out a small baking sheet, bowl, cutting board, chef’s knife and spoon.
Preheat the oven to 375
Cut the end off the zucchini and cut each zucchini in half lengthwise.
Using the spoon, scrape out the flesh in the middle making a “trough” in each about ½-3/4 inch deep.
If you want, sprinkle a bit of “Italian Seasoning” or dried herbs into the crumbs.
Cut the mozzarella in cubes about ½ inch square (or you can shred it)
If the zucchinis are a bit wobbly, cut a skosh off the bottom so that they are flat.
Place the cut zucchini on the baking sheet.
Drizzle a bit of oil in the trough of each and either rub in with your finger or use a basting brush. Sprinkle a bit of salt and pepper and garlic powder on it.
Put 4 or 5 half tomatoes in the trough of each zucchini with spaces between.
Sprinkle about half a tablespoon to a tablespoon of the crumbs over each zucchini (this will provide a bit of crunch).
Put the baking sheet in the oven for 20-25 minutes.
Remove from the oven and reset the oven to broil. Add the mozzarella—put a cube between each tomato half and at the ends. Sprinkle crumbled feta the length of the zucchini.
Pop back in the oven for about 3 minutes—keep an eye on it, you want to melt the cheese and just get it browning a little bit.
Remove from oven, let it cool for a couple of minutes and serve as a side on the plate. Or cut into quarters and arrange on the plate.
These are tasty! The grape/cherry tomatoes have a bit more acid and really add some flavor. The zucchini will have just a bit of “tooth” left in it. The mozzarella is cheesy and gooey and the feta gives it a salty goodness.
The Cheap Bastid Test: I used about a pound of zucchini at $1 a pound. The tomatoes were $1 a pound and I used maybe $.25 worth. The mozzarella was $3 a pound and used about $1 worth and about $.50 worth of feta. The crumbs—that was a half dozen crumbled saltines I crushed. Total expenditure: $2.75 for 4 boats—enough for 4 (we each had 1 ½ though). That’s pretty reasonable for something so good and tasty.
That's the Cheap Bastid Way: Eat Good. Eat Cheap. Be Grateful!
Come visit me at: http://www.cheap-bastid-cooks.com/