Stuffed Vegetables or “Les FARÇIES”
This a dish that my mom (like any French mom) cooks in France. There is a lot of variation, depending on which part of France you come from. There is some preparation, but the finished dish is so yummy that you forget all the hard work when you dig into this beautiful and healthy dish and see the smiling faces of your friends and family.
This is a complete meal! Firstly, there is the meat: ground pork, beef or any poultry, like chicken or duck, even certain fish like Lapu-Lapu or prawns, etc. Secondly, the vegetables used can be any kind of vegetables (this allows you to be creative in choosing your vegetables) and the combination of both makes it a primed recipe.
You can also be creative with this dish by adding some spices to make it more to your liking. So are we ready? Then follow me into my kitchen for the recipe and preparation.
Here we go.
(good for 8 Primed People)
– 4 pcs tomatoes
– 4 pcs of round eggplants
– 4 pcs of white or red onion
– 1 big zucchini
– 1 big cucumber
– 1.5 kg of ground pork meat (not too lean)
– 1 bunch of assorted fresh herbs (basil, tarragon, thyme, rosemary and oregano)
– 4 fresh eggs
– 3 garlic cloves
– olive oil
– salt and pepper
( please check the pictures, it will help you a lot for all procedures )
1. First, clean all your vegetables and herbs with clean and fresh water.
2. For the tomatoes, the onion and the eggplant, cut your vegetables at the top and keep the top so later when you will stuff your vegetables, you can use it like a hat on your vegetable to cover it. With your baller, scoop the vegetable out until there is a hole deep enough for you to put the stuffing into it .
3. Make sure you keep all the scooped out vegetables in a bowl (we will use that later for the sauce).
4. Now for the zucchini and the cucumber. For the cucumber, you have to peel alternating sections until the whole vegetable is done (to make a striped design on the skin) . Then cut it in four equal cylinders. Do the same step for the zucchini. With your baller, scoop out the insides of the vegetables without making a hole at the bottom of your vegetable. (You want to make them “cups” for your stuffing later).
5. When all your vegetables are ready put it in your fridge .
6. For the farce (or stuffing): get your ground pork, add the eggs, salt, pepper and half of all your fresh herbs that you had chopped (not too finely).
To make sure you have seasoned it enough, here’s a test you can do: Take a small portion from your stuffing mix and make a small patty and pan fry it. Taste it once it’s cooked. If it’s too bland, that means you may need to season your stuffing some more. Add some more salt and pepper to get the the stuffing to your taste.
7. Find a pan which can go into your oven and is big enough to put all your vegetables in. Add some olive oil, salt and pepper, garlic slices, and the rest of your fresh herbs.
8. Add salt and pepper and a little of olive oil into your vegetables first, then start to stuff your vegetables with the pork farce (or stuffing). Make sure you press it and add extra stuffing so when you add on top the vegetable it looks like a hat, or French beret!
9. When all your vegetables are stuffed, then it’s time to put it into your hot oven that you have pre-heated to 180 degrees Celsius. Make sure you look into your vegetables every 10 mins (depending on your oven, sometimes the degrees are different). Cook it for 20 to 30 minutes.
10. While your stuffed vegetables are cooking, get the scooped out vegetables (the ones you earlier placed in the bowl) and mix it in your mixer. Mix it until it becomes a liquid (like a purée), then put into a pan and cook it on the low fire. This will be your sauce to accompany your FARÇIES. Add some salt and pepper to taste and let it cook while waiting for your FARÇIES to finish in the oven.
11. When your FARÇIES is cooked, remove it from your oven and put it on a plate individually, or on a nice platter family style. Add the sauce on the plate and sauce boat for the family platter.
Now it’s time to try it and to enjoyed this beautiful dish.
Voila Bon appétit a vous!