Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Oven Fried Squash

My grandfather is retired and is constantly starting new projects or picking up new hobbies to keep himself busy.  This summer, the activity of choice was a garden.  Thank goodness!  I think this is much more realistic than his last hobby which I can only describe as preparing for the apocalypse.  For Christmas his gifts to my mother and I were car survival kits, complete with candles, freeze dried food, matches, small pots, flashlights, and power bars.  When I went away to Costa Rica, he gave me all sorts of hidden weapons to defend myself like a mini nunchuk and a flashlight with a blinder. Needless to say, this gardening hobby is much more up my alley!

Right now the garden is mostly producing zucchini and squash, which is perfect because those happen to be my favorite vegetables.  The zucchinis and squash that he's been giving me are absolutely GIGANTIC and I was worried that they would be too seedy in the middle to use.  But they aren't so I started to put them to good use.

One of my favorite recipes that my mom used to make was fried zucchini and squash.  She would dip squash and zucchini in an egg wash, bread crumbs, and then fry them in her electric frying pan.  I ate them like chips, to the point where I think I could eat a pound in the blink of an eye.  Now that I think about it, that's kind of gross because my mom used to put them on a paper towel for the oil to drain a little bit and the paper towels would be totally soaked through and puddles would form on the plate. 

Well now that I'm older and actually like the taste of vegetables more than grease (most of the time), I wanted to think of a healthier and lighter way to make it.  Not to mention, frying is kind of pain in the butt because it makes a big mess and sprays oil all over the place.  I decided to try to make them in the oven, which would completely eliminate the oil component. It worked and they were delicious! I only used squash this time around because the zucchini was so gigantic that the slices would have lost the fun chip-like quality.  The only thing I would change is to raise the oven temperature at the end of the cooking time so that the bread crumbs crisp up a little more.  Also, although I think they are perfect plain, I'd like to try to find some sort of dipping sauce (maybe something with lemon and basil?).  These are so easy, delicious, healthy, and addictive so try it out!  The recipe is after the pictures :)

Oven Fried Squash

  • 2 medium squash, cut into 1/8-inch slices
  • 1/2 cup seasoned dry bread crumbs
  • 1/8 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 1/8 teaspoon of garlic powder
  • 4 tablespoons grated Parmesan cheese
  • 2 egg whites
  1. Preheat the oven to 475 degrees. 
  2.  Spray a baking sheet with cooking spray.
  3. In one small bowl, stir together the bread crumbs, pepper and Parmesan cheese. Place the egg whites in a separate bowl. Dip zucchini slices into the egg whites, then coat the breadcrumb mixture. Place on the baking sheet.
  4. Bake for 7 minutes in the preheated oven, then turn over and bake for another 7 to 10 minutes, until browned and crispy.

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