Marrow topped with golden, bubbling cheese and stuffed with a beef-mince-based sauce. If you have a surplus of marrows, this recipe is good.
Start by preparing the tomato sauce. Put the fresh tomatoes in hot water for about 10 minutes, then peel, de-seed and cut each tomato into 8 pieces.
Fry some crushed garlic in sunflower on high heat just until you can smell the garlic, don’t let it burn.
Add all the tomato (freshly cut, canned chopped, strained and paste), followed by the water and salt. Bring to a boil and let simmer uncovered on low heat for about 20 minutes, then set it aside for later.
TO CORE THE KOOSA Cut the top off the marrow a little below the stem and remove the base by cutting off just a little.
- Measure the length of the marrow using the corer, leaving about 1 cm at the base. Put your thumb as a marker for the length of the marrow. Do not move your thumb. (This way you can be sure not to core the marrow too deeply.) - Insert the tip of the corer into the top of the marrow and form a circle while turning the marrow and the corer. (Not too big a circle, otherwise the stuffing will come out). - Insert the corer into the marrow up to your thumb. - Using both hands turn the corer and the marrow 2 full circles. Remove the corer and the inside of the marrow that comes with it. You need to slowly move the corer up and down to release the marrow from the bottom. - Re-insert the corer into the marrow and start scraping the sides while turning the marrow to loosen the inside. Remove the corer and the inside of the marrow. Repeat the scraping and emptying until you feel the insides of the marrow are smooth. Careful not to enlarge the hole at the top of the marrow. - Rinse each marrow from the inside and out.
FOR THE STUFFING: Fry the minced meat in sunflower oil on high heat, with black pepper, mixed spice and some salt. Make sure to constantly stir and break apart any meat clumps. Set it aside once the redness goes away from the meat (careful not to overcook).
Mix together the rice, safflower (optional) and water in a bowl.
Add the fried minced meat (with all its juices), cumin seeds, ground cumin and some salt. Mix well and put aside.
TO STUFF THE MARROW Using your hand, stuff each marrow with some minced meat and rice mixture. You only need to fill 2/3 of the marrow as the rice needs room to expand once cooked. Tap the marrow lightly on its base and use your finger to make sure the stuffing goes all the way down. Wipe the marrow from the outside when done.
TO COOK THE MARROW Bring the cooked tomato sauce back to a boil on high heat, then lower to medium. Drop the marrow into the tomato sauce one by one and leave to simmer covered for about an hour.
Add the dried mint and the remaining crushed garlic and mix gently, then continue to let simmer covered for another twenty minutes. Once it’s cooked, make sure to uncover it. Note: When you re-heat koosa, make sure the heat is on medium and the pot is not covered.