A Stuffed Picnic: Tuna and Artichoke Stuffed Tomatoes, Red Pepper, Feta and Chick Pea Stuffed Zucchini, Nut and Brown Sugar Stuffed Macintosh Apples
- Baked Stuffed Apples:
- 6 medium McIntosh apples
- 2 wedges lemon
- 6 tablespoons butter, softened
- 1 cup dark brown sugar
- 1/4 teaspoon freshly grated or ground nutmeg
- 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 1/2 cup walnut pieces
- 1/2 cup all-purpose flour
- 1/4 cup oatmeal
- Stuffed Tomatoes:
- 2 cans Italian tuna in olive oil, drained and flaked
- 1 can artichoke hearts in water, drained and chopped
- 2 ribs celery, chopped
- 1/2 medium red onion, chopped
- 1/2 cup pitted kalamata olives, a couple of handfuls, chopped
- 3 tablespoons chopped flat-leaf parsley, a handful
- 1 lemon, zested and juiced
- Extra-virgin olive oil, for drizzling
- Salt and pepper
- 6 vine ripe tomatoes, red, yellow, or mixed
- Stuffed Zucchini:
- 1 (15-ounce) can chick peas, drained
- 2 roasted red peppers, drained
- 8 ounces feta cheese, crumbled
- 1 clove garlic, cracked from skin
- 1/2 lemon, juiced
- Salt and coarse black pepper
- 2 medium zucchini squash, washed
Preheat oven to 425 degrees F.
Trim a thin slice off of the bottom of each apple. Cut the tops off apples and trim way skin of tops of apples, trim should be 1/2-inch wide. Hollow out the apples with a small paring knife, carving out a cavity for the filling. Rub the tops and cavities with wedges of lemon to retard browning.
Combine butter, sugar, nutmeg, cinnamon, nuts, flour and oatmeal in a bowl -- mixture should be crumbly -- and then pack into apples. Place apples in a shallow baking dish and add 1/4-inch of water to the dish. Bake apples 17 to 20 minutes, until filling bubbles and apples are tender but not soft. Remove from oven. Serve warm or room temperature.
For stuffed tomatoes, mix tuna and next 7 ingredients to combine. Season with salt and pepper, to taste. Cut a thin slice off the bottom of each tomato to stabilize it. Seed and hollow out the tomato with a spoon over garbage bowl or into sink with disposal system. Season tomatoes with salt and pepper, then fill with salad, mounding the tuna up. The tomatoes are ready to serve or chill.
For zucchini, combine chick peas and next 4 ingredients in a food processor and process until smooth. Season with salt and pepper. Cut each zucchini in half lengthwise. Hollow out seeds, making room for filling, using a soup spoon. Fill squash with chick pea and red pepper cheese using a rubber spatula. Cut the zucchini into 2 inch pieces.