Sunday, July 20, 2014

Zucchini Fries

When I was a kid my mom would always make fried zucchini in the summer. Even now fried zucchini reminds me of summer when I was younger and we knew summer had officially began when my mom would start making fried zucchini. It was perfectly crispy and crunchy, we couldn't get enough of it! Covered in bread crumbs, fried in olive oil, and topped with season salt while still hot, what more could ya ask for?!

My aunt has a pretty flourishing garden so she always supplies us with the best zucchini. The one she gave us the other day was enormous! I'm not even kidding, wait until you see the pictures. My sister and I had no clue what we wanted to make with all the zucchini until I remembered the time I had made zucchini fries. It's a much healthier option than my mom's fried zucchini but it's a satisfying substitute for the real thing. As my sister said last night the fries were delicious but the original fried zucchini is still "the bomb dot com" and.....I have to agree. But, like I said these zucchini fries are a perfectly acceptable alternative to the original!

So when you can't splurge for the original fried zucchini slices then why not try these lovely baked fries? I still kept the breadcrumb coating but decided to give baking them a try to give them a healthy twist. You can also do plain slices rather than fry shapes but I had seen a picture of zucchini "breadsticks" that were sorta shaped like fries so I figured fries might be fun!

What you need for this recipe is:

1-2 medium zucchini
1-2 eggs, lightly beaten
1 1/2-2 cups organic bread crumbs

1. Preheat oven to 425

2. Slice up the zucchini into "fries". Since this zucchini was so large first what I did was cut it into 4 sections and then cut each of those in thirds and then was able to cut the thirds into little "fries".

Like I said, this zucchini was huge! It was as long as the baking sheet and probably close to 6 inches in diameter at the thickest part. 

3. Once you have all your fries cut up, crack 2 eggs in one bowl and lightly beat them to break up the yolks. In the second bowl, measure out your breadcrumbs. I would start with only 1 egg and then 1 cup of bread crumbs. I'm never sure exactly how much I'll need since it depends on the size of your zucchinis. Since this one was huge, I think I used close to 2 1/2 cups of bread crumbs! We got a ton of fries out of this one.

4. Take each slice of zucchini and first dip it in the egg mixture then the bread crumbs. Make sure each slice is evenly coated and place it on the baking sheet. 

I left some of the zucchini plain to save some leftovers for tomorrow. The three of us didn't need that many fries so I figured I could use some for my lunch the next day!

5. Bake for 30 minutes. I set the timer at 15 minutes and flip them halfway through so that they brown on both sides. Once they're done the outside should be golden and crispy but inside the zucchini should be tender. I love how there are two different textures with these fries!

I paired mine with barbecue chicken and it was the perfect summer dinner! Definitely brought me back to my childhood even though it wasn't the exact same as the original. I'm all about re-creating comfort foods but in a healthier way. This recipe certainly succeeded at that!

As soon as they came out of the oven I sprinkled them with some sea salt. My mom always used season salt, which was great too but I was feeling like switching it up so I used sea salt. I have to say I don't know which one I liked better. We didn't really use sea salt a lot when I was younger but I'm a huge fan of it now. It definitely made the recipe! 

To keep up with the fry theme I had mine with some ketchup and like I said I wasn't missing real fries or even the original recipe. Even though the fried zucchini from my childhood will always be my favorite, these fries are a welcome substitute! 

And as always, I had the best helper in the kitchen :)

Happy Sunday!

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