Ligurian-style stuffed zucchini



Ligurian-style stuffed zucchini

Stuffed vegetables are an excellent solution: transform them into a unique and tasty dish that is suitable for any occasion. There are many ways to prepare stuffed vegetables, choosing from the qualities that best lend themselves to this type of recipe, such as onions, zucchini flowers or peppers. Sometimes these dishes are part of regional tradition, as in the case of Ligurian-style stuffed zucchini. There are several variations of this recipe, which often changes depending on the area or even from family to family, perhaps opting for ground meat, ricotta or mortadella. We instead propose a very tasty version with a filling made of tuna, anchovies, and eggs enriched by the aroma of pepper and thyme. Stuffed zucchini are the typical example of how simple ingredients can lend themselves to both a main course as well as a tasty appetizer. And if you love Ligurian products, you can make delicious fritters or a quiche with a delicate flavor, made with a special local vegetable, the crookneck summer squash!

Zucchini 1.5 lbs (700 g)
White onions 2 oz (60 g)
Eggs 2 - medium
Stale bread 1.4 oz (40 g)
Salted capers 1 tbsp (8 g)
Pine nuts 2 ½ tbsp (20 g)
Parmigiano Reggiano PDO cheese 1.8 oz (50 g) - for grating
Extra virgin olive oil 2 tbsp (30 g)
Black pepper 1 pinch
Anchovies 2 tsp (10 g)
Whole milk ¼ cup (60 g)
Tuna in oil 5.3 oz (150 g) - drained
Thyme to taste
Breadcrumbs ¼ cup (60 g)

How to prepare Ligurian-style stuffed zucchini

To prepare Ligurian-style stuffed zucchini, first wash the zucchini and boil them according to their consistency: if they are firm, you can leave them in boiling water for about 6-7 minutes. If they are a bit soft, then you can reduce the time by 1-2 minutes 1. Drain the zucchini and put them in a bowl with ice so they cool quickly without losing the beautiful bright green color 2. When they are cold, remove the ends of the zucchini 3,

then cut them in half lengthwise 4 and empty them with a corer; set them aside for a moment 5. In the meantime, cut the stale bread into cubes 6.

Pour it into a bowl and add the milk, then let it soften 7. Clean and cut the onion first horizontally, and then vertically 8. Then chop finely and move to the stove 9.

Heat the oil together with the onion and anchovies in a frying pan, let the anchovies melt, stirring often with a spatula, then add the zucchini pulp. Toss for a few minutes on high heat and transfer it to a bowl 11. Meanwhile, toast the pine nuts in another pan, ensuring that they do not burn 12.

Now that everything is ready, prepare the dough: in the blender pour the drained tuna, toasted pine nuts 13 and the washed capers 14. Add the soaked bread 15

and blend it all together until a homogeneous mixture is obtained 16. Add the mixture to the base of onions, anchovies and zucchini 17. Also add the grated Parmesan cheese 18,

the beaten eggs 19 and then season with salt, pepper 20 and thyme, then add the breadcrumbs and mix well with a spatula 21.

Grease a baking pan that can hold the zucchini 22 then stuff them with the mixture 23 and place them inside the baking pan 24.

Dust the surface with breadcrumbs 25 and bake in a preheated oven in grill mode at 480° F (250° C) for about 10-12 minutes 26. Once cooked, wait 5 minutes before serving your Ligurian-style stuffed zucchini 27.


We recommend eating the Ligurian-style stuffed zucchini as soon as they are ready, but if you wish you can keep them in the refrigerator in an airtight container for a couple of days at most.

Freezing is not recommended.


The mixture of Ligurian-style stuffed zucchini should be compact but not too dry; adjust the consistency by adding milk or Parmesan cheese as needed. To core the zucchini, you can use a teaspoon as an alternative to the corer, but be careful not to overdo it; the zucchini must not be too thin! If you don't want to grease the baking pan with oil, you can line it with baking paper!