This Lebanese dish known as Kousa mahshou bil-tamatem is without a doubt one of our family favorites. So much so, that when my sons left for college, this pot of simmering zucchinis became a fixture on my stovetop for every return visit.
It’s also dish that can’t be rushed, the coring/stuffing takes time along with about an hour cooking, but it’s well worth it. The finished zucchini will be firm and fork tender, while the lightly spiced rice and beef stuffing is moist and flavorful.
Using the proper sized zucchini is essential—look for small, firm ones that are uniform in size. This matters because you want a balanced bite of filling to the zucchini. If the cored zucchini is too large, you’ll be biting into too much rice filling. I’ve increased the ground beef to rice ratio from the traditional recipe because my sons enjoy the additional meat. Other variations you may find include using a vegetarian filling and poaching the zucchinis in a yogurt-mint broth.