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Zucchini Ripiene Alla Romana Simmered in Tomato Sauce

Updated: Apr 1, 2019

This traditional Roman dish is savory with a hint of sweetness from the raisons.

An added benefit is having left over risotto for arancini balls.



Zucchini is high in water and fiber. It also contains significant amounts of B vitamins, riboflavin, folate, C, and K, and minerals.


Season: Autumn/Winter

Prep time: 30 minutes

Cook time: 30-45 minutes

Serves 6


3 long zucchini, similar in size, cut in half on a diagonal

1 cup cooked arborio rice, recipe below

1/2 cup pignoli nuts

1/2 cup pecorino Romano cheese

1/4 cup Parmigiano , for grating finished dish

1/4 cup fresh parsley, chopped

1/2 cup raisons

1 egg

1/2 tsp. salt

1/8 tsp.fresh ground pepper

1 can whole or diced tomatoes, if whole mash with wooden spoon or use your hands.

pinch of oregano, added to tomatoes



While making risotto, prep all other ingredients, or make a day ahead.


Take cut zucchini and with an apple core, take out the interior flesh. You want enough space for stuffing. Stuff each squash with filling.


Heat large pan with olive oil and place zucchini in the pan and brown on all sides.

Pour in tomato sauce all around the zucchini. Shake the pan a bit.


Cover and zimmer on low -medium heat for 30 minutes or until tender. Sprinkle with fresh parsley and some parmigiano reggiano.

Serve warm.


Cooks Note: For an easy risotto. Dice one yellow onion, and saute in large shallow pan in 1 tbsp. olive oil and 1 tbsp. butter. When translucent and melted down, add rice. Stir for 3-5 minutes before adding stock, a total of 4-1/2 -5 cups in one cup increments. Waiting until each cup is almost absorbed. Start tasting after 20 minutes for al dente cooked rice. Take off the heat and add 1/2 cup grated parmigiano reggiano.


In a pinch - If you do not keep quarts of stock on hand in the freezer, use an organic chicken or vegetable stock. Have 5 cups on hand.