--- Watch Ainsley's Mediterranean Cookbook, 8.30pm Sundays on SBS Food or stream it on SBS On Demand ---
Yes, filling one ingredient inside another is where it's at.
Flex your mussels, roll your vine leaves and fill your zucchini flowers and dumplings. Here are our picks from a growing collection we like to call, "stuffed".
Never again feel the bitter pang of picking up a hollow shell. These aromatic rice-stuffed mussels are filled to the brim with a fresh mix of cracked rice, pine nuts, tomato, mint and raisins.
The Moorish influence on Spanish cuisine comes to life in these roasted peppers stuffed with pork and almond. The banana or bullhorn chillies are charred, stuffed and battered before frying.
No Greek tasting platter is complete without some dolmades. This is a vegetarian delight, however you can use pork, beef or lamb if you want a meaty starter. Serve it with some tzatziki and get your dip on.
5. Hug it in
The simplicity and deliciousness of rice stuffed leaves is taken to a new level with this recipe. Squeeze the parcel gently once rolling so it stays intact when its cooked and you'll want to serve them immediately.
These haloumi, mint and preserved lemon cigars cook pretty well on a barbecue hotplate. Serve with lemon wedges and get 'em while they're piping.
A non-negotiable party food, these pan-fried stuffed green chillies are filled with pork, tofu and a dash of sake, and quickly fried after a frollick in egg wash.
This magnificent dumpling celebrates all the bounty of the earth and if you've got a crowd coming over then these spinach and silverbeet dumplings are the ideal entertaining food.
Fresh poblano chilli grilled over charcoal, peeled and stuffed with cheese, dipped in light frothy egg batter, fried and served with a deeply satisfying tomato, onion and chilli sauce - what a cheesy winner of a dish.
Lamb stuffed with lemon, pine nuts and caperberries will feed more than a few, so call in the troops. Via Feast magazine
Muffaletta is a classic New Orleans layered sandwich, or so says the Internet. The true origin is Sicilian, though, and is nowadays the most colourful picnic idea since tartan rugs.
This beef stuffed with capsicum and blue cheese (matambre) is sewn together like a parcel and grilled over fire or coals. Via Feast magazine
Stuff a little protein into your carbohydrates and make it a one-pot pilaf, Mediterranean style - like Ainsley Harriott would.
Our vego capsicums are stuffed with rice, herbs and baharat. Return the tops after stuffing 'cause don't they look fancy?
These deep-fried tofu puffs are served with red hot chillies, plus black tea or beer to help tame the heat.
Want more? Sure. Check out our complete stuffed collection here.