As my CSA pick up is bi-weekly, I am waiting in great anticipation for this coming Sunday. Until then, I’ve been making use of what little I have left from two Sundays ago- bok choy in a cheese and tomato sandwich, plums and nectarines on the go, and the zucchini. Oh that wonderful zucchini. As a kid I never liked yellow squash or zucchini (except for zucchini bread, I could surely eat that all day!) I love zucchini now, but my typical (i.e. only) zucchini dish these days is in stir fry with teriyaki or soy sauce. I decided to mix that up and try something new. The creation? Zucchini fries.
There are varying recipes for this idea, the one I went for was baked instead of deep fried- deep fried food hardly appeals to my taste buds. The general idea is to slice the zucchini into 1/4″ sticks, dip in egg, roll in breadcrumbs or the like, season, and bake.
Finding edible breadcrumbs in the store was quite the adventure. Every box I looked at contained at least 10 lines of unpronounceable ingredients. Not the fresh, simple food I prefer to eat. I finally went with the Kikkoman panko bread crumbs. The only main ingredient is wheat flour, and it “contains less than 2% of each of the following: sugar, yeast, soybean oil, salt.” That’s as good as it gets unless you make your own.
I went through all the motions- slice zucchini, dip in egg, roll in breadcrumbs, place on pan. I experimented and used one pan with parchment paper, one without and ever so slightly oiled. Both were successful so I know for next time I can save my parchment paper and not worry about the fries sticking to the pan.
I seasoned one pan with just salt and pepper and the other also with garlic and parmesan (I’m a wanna-be vegan who is a sucker for cheese!) Put them both in the oven at 350 degrees for 20 minutes, then another 10, then another 10 … still didn’t think they were quite done but the breadcrumbs were starting to get a bit too browned.
Consensus? They were tasty for sure. I’d like to figure out how to make the zucchini a bit more dehydrated, as it was basically just heated up zucchini still all bendy and “juicy” covered in tasty seasonings. Have you tried making these before? Any tips I should know for next time?
They were a great addition to some leftover pasta I made the day before- bowtie with sauteed garlic, white beans, sun-dried tomatoes, lemon juice, and olive oil. And while I prefer a dry red wine, I couldn’t pass up the opportunity to perfectly pair this meal with a white I bought up in wine country. It all made for a great Sunday lunch!