Zucchini Parmesan Crisps

We got armloads of zucchini from our CSA this summer, and since neither Dan nor I are big fans of it, I had to find lots of ways to disguise it.  I started with the obvious zucchini breads and muffins, but after a while, I had exhausted all of those recipes and was looking for a savory zucchini dish.  We happened to be having some friends over for dinner, so I decided that it was a perfect occasion to try out something new.

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This recipe proves that you can bread almost anything and turn it into deliciousness. The crisps actually got crispy in the oven without any frying, and they stayed crispy until our guests came over.  I was surprised, since zucchini is usually so watery.  The marinara sauce added some nice complementary flavors, and the crisps disappeared quickly.  One of our more enterprising friends even added one to her burger.  If only we could have used our legion of cucumbers the same way…

Zucchini Parmesan Crisps 
adapted from The Food You Crave by Ellie Krieger
I found this recipe online from Ellie Krieger.  I have heard that her recipes don’t always have enough flavor, so I decided to add a bunch of extra spices. 

1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese (I used some pecorino too)
1/2 cup panko breadcrumbs
salt (I was pretty generous)
dried thyme
dried sage or rosemary
freshly ground black pepper 
1 Pound of zucchini (about 2 medium)
1 Tbsp olive oil
marinara sauce for dipping (optional)

1. Preheat oven to 450 F.  Line a baking sheet with foil and spray with cooking spray.

2.  Combine the 1/2 c cheese, 1/2 c panko, salt and pepper (to taste) in a shallow bowl and set aside. 

3. Slice the zucchini into 1/4-inch rounds and place in a medium bowl.  Add the olive oil and toss to coat evenly. 

4. Working with one round at a time, generously coat both sides with the panko mixture, pressing down to ensure that it adheres.

5.  Place the breaded zucchini rounds on the prepared baking sheet. 

6. Bake for 25-30 minutes, or until the zucchini is tender and the breadcrumbs are golden and crisp. 

7. Serve warm with marinara sauce, if desired.

Nutritionals (20 rounds/per round) Cals: 35, Fat: 2, Carb: 3, Fiber: 1, Protein: 2