Prep Time: 20 min | Total Time: 30 min | Serves: 6
- 1 c. brown rice
- 2 c. water
- 3 Tbsp. extra virgin olive oil, divided
- 2 Italian chicken sausage links
- 4 medium sized zucchini
- 1/3 c. Jeff’s Naturals™ Pitted Kalamata Olives, rinsed and rough chopped
- 1/3 c. Jeff’s Naturals™ Feta Cheese Stuffed Olives, rough chopped
- ½ c. Jeff’s Naturals™ Sun-Ripened Dried Tomatoes, rough chopped
- ½ c. Jeff’s Naturals® Roasted Red Bell Pepper and Caramelized Onion, rough chopped
- ¼ c. Jeff’s Naturals™ Hot Cherry Peppers, rough chopped
- 1 ½ Tbsp. chopped mint
- 2 Tbsp. basil, chopped
- 1 egg, beaten
- 2 c. Napa Valley Bistro™ Homemade Style Marinara Pasta Sauce, plus more sauce on the side
- 1/3 c. bread crumbs
- Salt and pepper to taste if needed
Preheat oven to 375° F.
Cook rice in a rice cooker or on stovetop. If cooking it on the stovetop, bring water to a boil with a splash of olive oil, stir in rice and turn heat to low heat and cover. Let simmer until rice is tender and water is absorbed, about 45 minutes. Fluff rice with a fork when done cooking and set aside to cool.
Meanwhile, heat some olive oil in a sauté pan on medium high heat. Remove chicken sausage from casing and cook sausage crumbles until browned and no pink is remaining, about 10 minutes. Remove from pan and let sit in a paper towel lined bowl to absorb any excess oil.
While meat is sautéing, cut zucchini in half lengthwise and scoop out seeds with a melon baller to create a well down the middle of each piece.
Once rice and meat are cooled, place in a large mixing bowl. Stir in the chopped olives, sundried tomatoes, peppers, mint, cilantro, basil and season with salt and pepper to taste. Add beaten egg to mixture and stir until thoroughly combined.
In a baking dish, add enough marinara sauce to generously cover the bottom. Spoon the rice mixture into each piece of zucchini and place in the baking dish.
Top each zucchini with bread crumbs that have been mixed with a little olive oil.
Bake in the oven, uncovered, for 35 minutes or until zucchini is tender when pierced with a fork. Serve with more marinara sauce on the side if you please.