Ingredients (serves 6):
- 8-9 courgettes
- 500 g minced beef
- 1 carrot
- 1 onion
- 4 tbsp. vegetable oil
- 3 cloves of garlic
- 120-150 g bacon cubes (optional)
- 70-80 g rice (uncooked!)
- salt, pepper, "Vegeta" (vegetable seasoning), sweet paprika
- potato slices
- vegetable oil, flour, 1/2 tsp. sweet paprika (for the sauce)
Filling: Thinly slice the carrot and the onion. Heat the oil in a pan, add the minced beef, onion and carrot, and steam at medium temperature for 20 minutes (or longer) until the liquid has evaporated, stirring occasionally.
Add the finely chopped garlic cloves, together with the bacon cubes and the rice (uncooked!), to the meat in the pan. (Alternatively, the bacon can be briefly sautéd separately, before adding to the minced meat). When the meat is done, season to taste, and remove from the heat.
While the filling is cooling, slice the ends off the courgettes and cut each one in half. Then use a teaspoon to scrape the pips out, making room for the filling while taking care to leave sufficient flesh around the inside edge. (Otherwise the hollowed-out cylinders may collapse during cooking). Now peel the courgettes (peeling them first makes it much more difficult to core them!).
Fill each courgette half with the stuffing and plug the top end with a thin slice of potato. (Cutting into the slice (as far as the center) makes it easier to tuck it into the cored courgette. Place the cored and stuffed cougettes upright (potato slice up!) in a tall pot, add enough water to cover them, and simmer for 30-40 minutes.
The sauce should be prepared about 10 minutes before the courgettes are ready. Heat 50 ml of oil to a high temperature in a small saucepan. Then turn the heat off, leaving the saucepan on the hotplate. Sprinkle 1 tbsp. of flour into the oil until the sauce has taken on the consistency of custard (15 seconds or so). Remove the saucepan from the heat, add half a teaspoonful of sweet paprika and stir in thoroughly.
Spoon the sauce on top of the courgettes, while they are still cooking, tilting the pot a few times to distribute it evenly. Leave to simmer for 2-3 minutes.