Have you ever forgotten to check your courgette plant for a few days or missed some hiding zucchini on your last visit?
Then you probably have had the experience of encountering a giant marrow!
While impressive and rather beautiful, this vegetable is often looked down on by home growers and cooks. The skin is tougher and the flesh milder than a regular courgette, which makes it a great flavour carrier. Additionally, its shape and size make it an ideal vessel for stuffing. Finally, depending on which ingredients you use, it can make for a very economical meal, its large size perfect to fill up a family.
We also don’t want to see perfectly edible food going to waste, especially if it’s been lovingly home-grown!
Today we share (another) one of Taeko’s delicious creations, using sourdough as a base for the stuffing. This recipe is a basic template and can (should!) be customised with what you have in the fridge and what is in season. Make it more hearty by including some meat or vegetable proteins such as lentils or tempeh. Make it dairy-free by omitting the cheese or using a vegan substitute. The possibilities are truly endless!
Who knows, it might even become your favourite way to cook courgettes!
Stuffed Marrow with Sourdough Bread
For the stuffed marrow:
- 1 marrow or several, depending on the size of your family and oven dish
- Day-old sourdough bread, torn or cut into pieces
- Garlic, chopped
- Your choice of cheese, grated – ideally something that melts well
- Olive oil
- Herbs such as spring onion, thyme, oregano, parsley, basil…
- Meat such as bacon or chorizo (optional)
- Egg (optional)
- Salt and pepper
For the tomato sauce:
- Onions, diced
- Garlic (optional)
- Spices such as curry powder, cinnamon, nutmeg, chilli… Or go Mediterranean with herbs such as thyme, oregano, rosemary…
- 1 or 2 cans of tomatoes, or chopped fresh tomatoes if you have them
- Salt and pepper
- Olive oil
- Preheat your oven to about 180°C.
- Wash the marrow, trim the ends off and slice in half lengthways. Scoop out the seeds and fluff and transfer to the compost. Scoop out some flesh to leave a 1cm border.
- In the bowl of a food processor, place the marrow flesh, pieces of sourdough, chopped garlic, roughly chopped herbs, a handful of grated cheese, meat (if using) and pulse until well mixed.
- If the mixture looks dry, you may want to add a glug of olive oil and/or an egg or two. It may be already wet enough that you don’t need to add more liquid. Season generously with salt and pepper and pulse again.
- Fill the marrow halves with this mixture. Sprinkle with some more cheese if you wish.
- Bake for half an hour or until the marrow is cooked through (test with a knife).
While the marrow is baking, prepare the tomato sauce:
- In a heavy-based saucepan, heat some oil and add the diced onion. Cook for 5 min, then add the garlic if using and cook for another minute or two while stirring.
- Add spices or herbs and stir. Then add the tomatoes and cook down on low heat, stirring now and then. It may splatter so partially covering with a lid is a good idea.
- Season with salt and pepper to taste.
- Take the dish with the stuffed marrows out of the oven and pour the tomato sauce around them. Put back in the oven for another 5 to 10 minutes.
- Serve as is or with a green salad to make the most of the summer bounty!
We hope you enjoy creating your delicious version of this recipe. After all, cooking is an exercise in making use of what is bountiful and cheap. The changing seasons mean we get to perpetually create with what is available right now.
Let us know how you go, we would love to see your marrow photos!