Saturday, July 23, 2011

Zucchini Parmesan

There are several steps before the assembly.  I used an 8" square ceramic baker.  Plan on an 1.5 to 2 hours to get it to into the oven, alot of that time is waiting time.

Purchase ready made marinara sauce or make your own -
1 -28oz can of crush San Marzano tomatos
1 medium onion sliced fine
1-2 cloves of garlic
Olive oil
1t Dried oregano

Preheat heavy bottom sauce pan.  Add olive oil to just cover the bottom.  When hot add onion, cook until translucent.  Add garlic and saute for about 2 minutes more.  Add tomatos and dried oregano.  Bring to a boil and reduce to a slow simmer.  Let cook until you are ready to assemble, about an hour.

Prepare zucchini
Two medium to large zucchini
Baking sheets
Paper towel or cloth towels

Do not peel.  Cut off the ends.
Slice the zucchini length-wise in 1/8th to 1/4" slices.
Lay them on the baking sheets with the towel on it.  Salt liberally, flip and repeat.
Let them sit for an hour or so while the sauce is bubbling.  You're trying to get as much moisture out of the zucchini so you don't have a soupy mess in the caserole.

Saute the zucchini pieces
Bread crumbs
2 eggs slightly beaten with 3T of water
Olive oil (or veg oil) for the saute

After the zucchini has released its water, it's time to get them coated in much the same way you would with eggplant parmesan.

In a shallow dish or pan beat the eggs with the water.  On a plate or shallow pan put in the bread crumbs.  Coat the slices with the egg and then into the crumbs.  Place on a cooling rack until you get through all the pieces.

In a large skillet, heat up the olive oil.  It should be shimmering before you put in the zucchini.  Saute in batches and placed the sauted pieces back on the cooling (baking) racks.  Lightly sprinkle with salt when still hot.

Make ricotta stuffing
1lb container of part skim ricotta cheese
1 egg slightly beaten
1/2c freshly grated Parmesan cheese
Freshly chopped parsley to your taste
Salt & pepper

In a medium sized bowl combine all ingredient and return to fridge until assembly.

Preheat oven to 350
1c grated Parmesan
2c (or your choice) sliced mozzarella cheese

In the 8x8 pan put a coating of the sauce in the bottom and then a layer of zucchini which you can cut to fit, then more sauce, Parmesan and mozzarella.  For the second layer turn the pan 90 degrees. Repeat until you get to the top of the pan.  On the top should be sauce, slices of mozzarella and the Parmesan.

Bake covered with aluminium foil for 25 minutes.  Uncover and cook until bubbling and the cheese is browning, about 20 more minutes.

Happy eating!

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