Friday, December 7, 2012

Stuffed Zucchini with Egg Lemon Sauce

 Early every morning the old neighborhoods of Athens came to life. Chatting ladies watered their gardens of herbs and flowers and children playied and shouted while waiting for the local produce manto arrive with his horse and buggy loaded with all kinds of localfresh fruits and vegetables.  I remember it was a beautiful Saturday morning and I was looking forward to hitting the streets and meeting my friends for a day of fun when my grandma demanded I accompany her to help with the days marketing.  This was not how I had planned the day to go, but  I could never to say no to my grandma . As we looked at all of the beautiful produce on the buggy, my grandma asked "What is your heart's desire to eat today, Yannis?"  As I imagined the tomatoes, the broccoli, the cabbages, the peppers, potatoes and the eggplants all cooked and sitting on my table, I caught sight of a beautiful stack of kolokythakia--zucchini--flowers and all. "Kolokythakia, Yiayia, I want stuffed kolokythakia", I shouted.  She said that would be great but I'd have to help her.  I  enjoyed running those errands almost as much as I would have enjoyed playing with my friends.  I always enjoyed stuffed zucchini..and having a yiayia who never said no to me!!!

Stuffed Zucchini with Egg Lemon Sauce
7-8 medium zucchinis
3/4 cup ground round
1/2 lb. ground pork
1/2 cup long grain rice
1 onion, finely chopped
1/2 cup finely chopped dill and parsley
2 egg whites
salt and pepper

  Wash the zucchini and cut off the caps; with a kitchen carving tool,cut out the interior, leaving a wall of about 1/4 inch all around. If this is too difficult, the zucchini can be cut in half.  Mix all of the stuffing ingredients together in a medium sized bowl; and stuff into the zucchini tube.  Place the stuffed zucchinis in a pot and cover with water; add two beef bouillon cubes, 1 Tables. olive oil and 1 Tables. butter.  Place a plate over the vegetables, cover and bring to a boil; reduce the heat and simmer for one hour.

3 Tables. butter
3 Tables. flour
1 cup warm milk
4 Tables. lemon juice
2 egg yolks
juice from cooking stuffed zucchini

   Melt the butter in a large skillet, add the flour and slowly stir in the warm milk.  Add a little juice from the cooking pot -- stirring constantly; when it's thick, add a little sauce to the 2 egg yolks, then stir the eggs into the butter sauce; add the lemon juice; gently place the zucchini in the sauce.  We like to eat this with a tomato and feta salad and lots of crusty bread for the great sauce.  Oh, don't forget your favorite wine--rosé is very nice with this dish.

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