7.31.2012

Baked Parmesan Zucchini Fries

We all have them, or we know people who do. Those giant green garden logs have taken up our counter space log enough. It's time to take a stand before it gets out of control (those of you who have zucchini-infested gardens understand exactly what I'm talking about.)

When my Mom brought over a couple zucchini and squash last week, I was pretty pumped about the squash. I love squash. I usually bread it up and fry the heck out of it. Done. But that zucchini could only be met with a glazed-over look of complete hopelessness.

I used one of them on my Thin Crust Garden Vegetable Pizza with Pepper Jack Cheese last week, but I still had another zucchini lingering over my head, and I hate to be wasteful - especially with fresh garden produce.

It was then when I remembered eating at one of my favorite places in Utah: Magleby's. We don't get to eat there often, (the entrees are a wee bit out of our price range), so we usually save it for Valentine's Day or our Wedding Anniversary (coming up on the big number 5 this month). Their salads are nothing to write home about, but MAN they have one of the best Prime Rib dishes out there; their Filet Mignon as a tasteful close second. The first time we went to Magleby's, it was during recruiting season for law school. Ryan still hadn't decided which law school to choose from his acceptance letters, so a local law professor took us out to dinner to talk things over. He ordered us a plate of fried zucchini - at first I was completely skeptical. But after dipping those crispy, but deliciously savory, zucchini slices in that zingy marinara sauce, I was hopelessly in love. I'm not big on appetizers, but the second we step into Magelby's, I can't help but crave a full-plate of that tasty, fried zucchini.

So, naturally, with this last zucchini, I wanted to take a crack at one of my favorites - except this time, I ditched the frying pan and pool of oil, and decided to keep things light in the oven. Baked zucchini fries. And yes, warm marinara sauce was essentially nearby.

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Baked Parmesan Zucchini Fries

Ingredients:
1 large zucchini, ends removed
1/2 C flour
2 t salt, divided
3/4 t ground black pepper, divided
3 large eggs
1 1/2 C panko crumbs
1/2 C grated Parmesan Cheese

Directions:
Preheat oven to 425 degrees.

Line a large cookie sheet with parchment paper, and position oven rack in the center of the oven. Cut zucchini into thick french fries. I noticed that the very center of the zucchini (with all those seeds) doesn't hold together very well for fries. So it won't hurt to leave those pieces out.

With 3 shallow and wide bowls, you're going to make 3 separate coating mixtures:
In the first bowl, stir together flour, 1 t salt, 1/2 t pepper.
In the second bowl, whisk together eggs, 1/2 t salt, and 1/4 t pepper.
In the third bowl, combine panko crumbs, Parmesan, and 1/2 t salt.

Working in batches, and keeping one hand for the dry ingredients and one hand for the wet eggs, first dip zucchini in flour, shaking off excess. Transfer to egg mixture and toss until coated, letting excess egg run off, then coat zucchini in panko mixture.

Arrange zucchini, without crowding, in one single layer on prepared pan. Bake 15 minutes and then carefully flip zucchini to other side (I noticed a fork worked best). Continue to bake until panko is golden and crisp, about 10 minutes (take a peek after 7 minutes, though, just in case. Baking time will depend on oven, size of zucchini slices, etc).

Serve with warm marinara/pizza sauce. 

Recipe Adapted From: Oprah.com/food
linking up here.

11 comments:

  1. Those look amazing! I hope you don't mind that I pinned your recipe. If you want me to take it off, I will. I've got to make those! Thanks so much for your nice comment on my Cranberry Morning post today. You can come sit beside my little pond any day. :-) My turtle would enjoy some company! His only companions are the snails who live in the pond - and an occasional visitor who sits in the swing and sips tea.

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    1. Pin away! As always :) I loved your pictures so much, everything looked so serene.

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  2. Zucchini Fries!? Yes please! Looks oh so tasty. And i'm glad I stumbled on your blog from the tutorial tuesday hop!

    -Milynn
    www.Love-and-Whimsy.blogspot.com

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  3. Maglbys! I havn't lived I Utah for 10 years but I still miss Maglebys. Btw. It may spend weird but zucchini are great in a smoothie. I put one in every morning along with the fruit and you can't taste it but so good fr you!

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  4. Maglbys! I havn't lived I Utah for 10 years but I still miss Maglebys. Btw. It may spend weird but zucchini are great in a smoothie. I put one in every morning along with the fruit and you can't taste it but so good fr you!

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  5. These look fantastic!
    I've never eaten something like this and I'm definitely going to try
    Thanks so much for sharing!:)

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  6. I love the healthy twist you put on this!!!! Genius!

    I would love to have you guest post some more healthy comfort food on my blog, "The EfficeintBody Diaries." Let me know if your interested.

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  7. Ooooh, yum! These look so good! Thanks for sharing at the Anything Goes party! I'll be visiting again to see what you're making ;-)
    Blessings, Nici @ posedperfect.blogspot.com

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  8. These look yummy! I love zuchini and it is plentifully available right now
    I would love to have you link this up to my linky party! http://domesticrandomness.blogspot.com/2012/08/new-to-inlinkz-first-linky-party.html

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  9. I have a whole counter of garden logs, giggle. I am making these, YUM!!!Thank you for sharing. I enjoyed my visit to your lovely blog. I hope you will join our hop tomorrow. Hugs!

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  10. Who needs Magleby's when they have YOU! I'd love to give it a try. I just have to figure out what panko crumbs are!

    Warmly, Michelle

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