“Stuffed vegetables – a most ancient Sukkot dish, probably having its genesis with the grape leaves remaining on the vine after the harvest that were then filled and simmered until tender – are common sights on holiday tables in all communities,” wrote the late Gil Marks. “As there were few or no grapes in much of northern and eastern Europe, the prevalent cabbage became a handy substitute.”
Perhaps we stuff foods on Sukkot to remind us of the harvest and abundance in the fields, as well as the multiple blessings we have been given in life. Here are a few recipes I have in my files.
SHARA’S STUFFED TOMATOES
(This is my daughter’s recipe.)
salt and pepper to taste
2 tbsp breadcrumbs
2 tbsp olive oil
1 minced garlic clove
grated Romano cheese
- Grease a baking dish. Preheat oven to 300°F.
- Place tomato halves in baking dish. Sprinkle with salt and pepper.
- Combine breadcrumbs, olive oil and garlic in a bowl. Spoon onto tomato halves.
- Sprinkle on cheese and basil.
- Bake (or broil) until brown. Serve immediately.
RUTH’S IRAQI STUFFED PUMPKIN
(My longtime friend made this recipe. It makes 4-6 servings.)
2 pounds cleaned pumpkin
cinnamon for sprinkling
3 cups cooked rice
ginger to taste
1/2 cup raisins
1/4 cup finely chopped nuts
- Preheat oven to 350°F. Grease a baking dish.
- Place pumpkin in baking dish. Dot with margarine pieces. Sprinkle with cinnamon. Bake for 30 minutes.
- In the meantime, oil a frying pan. Fry rice with cinnamon and ginger until brown. Add two cups water and simmer.
- Spoon rice into pumpkin and bake one hour.
- Fry raisins and nuts a few minutes and add to pumpkin. Sprinkle brown sugar on top. Bake until pumpkin is soft.
(makes 6 servings)
1 1/2 pounds zucchini, halved and quartered with pulp removed
1 1/2 cups seasoned breadcrumbs
3 tbsp olive oil
1 1/2 cups tomato sauce with onion
3/4 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese (optional)
- Heat oil in a frying pan, add zucchini quarters, cover and cook until lightly brown. Reduce heat to low, cover and cook 10 minutes more. Transfer to a baking dish.
- Place pulp in a bowl and stir in breadcrumbs. Spoon breadcrumbs into the zucchini. Top each with one tablespoon tomato sauce. If using cheese, sprinkle each with one tablespoon cheese.
- Broil three inches from heat source for three to four minutes, until sauce bubbles (and cheese melts, if using it).
Sybil Kaplan is a journalist, editor of nine kosher cookbooks (working on a 10th) and a food writer living in Jerusalem. She has written the kosher restaurant features for janglo.net since 2014 and leads weekly English-language Shuk Walks in Machane Yehuda.