This used to mean something else at a different time in my life, but tonite, it meant delicious 8-ball zucchini stuffed with quinoa, onions, garlic, toasted walnuts and herbs and spices. It seems labor intensive, but it's not. You'll have some of the quinoa mixture leftover, which is good all on its own. You can mix some seasoned tofu into this, which is how I had meant to make it but forgot. It was fine on it's own. The spices you use will really make this dish special.
Toasted Walnut & Quinoa Stuffed Eight Ball Zucchini
4 Eight Ball Zucchinis
1 cup quinoa
1 cup vegetable broth
1/4 cup toasted walnuts
1/4 cup currants
3 tbsp chopped parsley
3 tbsp chopped basil
1 medium onion
4 garlic cloves, chopped
spice mix (I used a Yucatan Spice mix described here; but you can use cumin, paprika, cinnamon . . .)
Cut the zucchini heads off like you were cutting out a pumpkin for Halloween. Scrape out the insides, chop them up into little pieces, and set them aside. Set the empty zucchinis into a baking dish with a bit of broth on the bottom.
Toast the quinoa in a cast iron pan and then cook with one cup of water and one cup of broth. Season with salt and pepper.
Sautee the onion and garlic in a cast iron pan. Once the onion starts to brown, add the zucchini and sautee until tender. Add half of the chopped herbs, the currants, and the walnuts. Once everything is mixed and heated through, add to the quinoa with the rest of the fresh herbs. Mix thoroughly. Spoon into each of the eight ball zucchinis and bake at 400 F for about 30-45 minutes.
We served this with a dollop of lebne and a bit of sriracha sauce on the side (you could substitute plain yogurt or sour cream and hot sauce), and a Middle Eastern Beet Salad with parsley, toasted walnuts, and rosewater.