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Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Zucchini Parmesan

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I did not expect us to love this dish as much as we did. I suppose I shouldn’t be surprised. We love our vegetables, and it’s a well-remembered fact that Ryan ordered eggplant parmesan on our first date. However, I really added this to our menu plan because I had three zucchini sitting in my produce drawer and as much as I love this healthified zucchini bread, I spent the last few weeks more focused on Christmas cookies!

There are days like I like to pull out all the stops with my cooking—bake my own sandwich buns, make pasta sauce from scratch, you get the picture. Other days, it’s all about getting food on the table fast, or in the case of this recipe, faster. This zucchini parmesan casserole requires a number of steps before you get it in the oven to bake (though I’m sure you could do this a few hours ahead of time and bake once ready!), so don’t feel bad about cheating with store-bought marinara sauce and bread crumbs! The steps, though a bit time consuming, go quickly and the end product is worth the assembly line of dipping zucchini that’s required!

When I say we loved this, I mean we managed to eat half of the 9 x 13 inch sized casserole for lunch one Sunday afternoon and would’ve kept going for more, had we not wanted to save it for leftovers. We ate the casserole as is, but you could also serve it over pasta. Stuffed with pasta sauce and cheese, this hit the spot…pretty sure even non-zucchini lovers would go for this! 
One Year Ago: Baked Potato Soup

Zucchini Parmesan
from Taste and Tell 

-1/2 cup flour
-3 eggs, lightly beaten
-1 1/2 cups seasoned bread crumbs (mine were Italian seasoned)
-3 large zucchini, cut lengthwise into 1/4-inch thick slices
-1/4 cup canola oil
-1 (25 oz) jar prepared marinara sauce
-2 cups shredded mozzarella cheese
-1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese

1. Preheat the oven to 375F. Grease a 9x13 inch baking dish and set aside.
2. Put out three shallow dishes. Place the flour in one, the eggs in another, and the breadcrumbs in the third. Dip each slice of zucchini in the flour, followed by the eggs, followed by the breadcrumbs. Cover both sides of the zucchini to coat. Set zucchini aside.
3. Heat the oil in a large saute pan over medium-high heat. Cook the zucchini for 1 1/2 to 2 minutes on each side, until golden brown. Cook in batches and add more oil if needed.
4. Spread 1/2 cup marinara sauce in the bottom of the baking dish. Place 1/3 of the zucchini in the pan, topped with 3/4 cup sauce and 2/3 cup mozzarella. Repeat twice, finishing with the sauce and cheese. Sprinkle with the Parmesan.
5. Lightly cover the pan with foil and bake for 30 minutes. Remove the foil and bake for an additional 10 minutes. Remove from the oven and allow to sit for 10 minutes before slicing.

This post is linked to Eat at Home.