stuffed courgettes

my oversupply of fennel was accompanied by an abundance of courgettes – i got over-excited and ordered three different types and then had to work out ways to use them up! i mostly relied on this courgette and double-tomato pasta recipe, which i’m a bit obsessed with this year. however, for the round courgettes i wanted to retain and make use of their shape. stuffing them seemed to be the obvious thing to do.

i decided to keep things (mostly) vegetarian and while the scooped-out courgettes were roasting (20 mins at 200c, having rubbed with oil and seasoned their insides) i fried some shallots and garlic with the courgette flesh, some finely diced aubergines (i was making a batch of this aubergine and lentil salad so kept the ends for my courgette dish) and some nduja (this is the non-veggie component but you could easily use harissa paste or fresh chillies).

once this had softened i added some diced sundried tomatoes, a handful of toasted pine nuts and torn basil leaves. i wanted to bulk everything up a bit more so rehydrated a handful of couscous and added this to the mix. this was used to stuff the partly cooked courgette cases, with a hidden surprise of smoked mozzarella in the middle; i also topped each courgette with a little extra mozzarella (omit this, as well as the nduja, if you want a vegan version). another 15 minutes in the oven and this was ready to serve.

we ate this with anna hansen’s lemongrass braised cherry tomatoes and warm ciabatta, to mop up the tomato juices.