Patizón – the Slovak word for summer pattypan squash – is probably derived from the French pâtisson. The vegetable has become quite popular among Slovaks, who like to coat and fry it like these Fried Zucchini Rings. However, there are a few recipes on Slovak cooking websites that use the unpeeled and hollowed out patizón as a container for various fillings.
In the recipe below this round, shallow squash with scalloped edges is scooped out and filled with cooked buckwheat groats and a mix of sautéed seasonal vegetables. I have also seen rice being used instead of the buckwheat, and different cheeses to enhance the flavour and the nutritional value of the dish. I used our smoked oshtyiepok cheese to make it more Slovak, but it’s very unlikely you can get it outside of Slovakia, so make your own choices here.
Some recipes suggest incorporating the pulp of the squash into the filling, but my pattypan’s flesh had too many seeds and they were quite big, so I discarded it.
Stuffed Pattypan Squash
- 1 medium-size pattypan (approx. 800 g)
- 4 cherry tomatoes
- 1 green pepper, stemmed and seeded
- 1 small red onion, peeled and chopped
- 1 – 2 cloves garlic, peeled and crushed
- 4 tablespoons buckwheat, cooked
- salt and ground black pepper to taste
- a few drops of freshly squeezed lemon juice
- 100 g grated cheese
- 2 tablespoons oil + more for glazing
- Rinse the squash under running water and dry off on a kitchen towel. Cook the buckwheat groats according to the instructions on the packet.
- Cut off the top of the squash – you will later use it as a lid – and scoop out the inner part with a tablespoon. Either discard the pulp or use some of it for the filling. Wash the tomatoes and the pepper and cut them into small pieces. Peel the onion and the garlic. Brush the inside of the squash with some lemon juice and spread a little salt around it.
- Put the oil in a saucepan and place over medium heat. Toss in the chopped onion and cook until translucent, about 2 minutes. Add the green pepper and season with salt and ground black pepper. Sauté for a couple minutes, then add the tomatoes and continue cooking until they shrivel. Crush the garlic into the sautéed vegetables and cook for another 2 minutes. Finally, stir in the strained buckwheat groats and put aside.
- Fill the bowl of the pattypan squash with the buckwheat & vegetable mixture. Sprinkle some of the cheese on top and cover with the ‘lid’ (see step 2). Put on a baking sheet and bake in the oven preheated to 170°C for about 45 minutes or until the pattypan skin starts browning. Take out of the oven and let cool.
- When the squash is cool enough to handle, transfer it onto a cutting board and glaze with some oil. Divide into portions, sprinkle the rest of the cheese over top and serve immediately.
This Stuffed Pattypan Squash makes for a nice and filling weekday dinner. It is low in fat and high in protein (buckwheat), fibre and other nutrients like rutin, magnesium, vitamins A, B and C. It is also suitable for the gluten-free diet.