Sunday, July 14, 2013

Baked Zucchini Parmesan for 200 calories

I love anything parmigiana style. Take any protein or easily coated vegetable, cover it in breadcrumbs and parmesan, and add marina liberally? Yup, I'm in. Here we use the humble and healthy zucchini to deliver a crispy, low calorie alternative to a deep fried and heavily cheese laden chicken version you'd order at your local trattoria.

You'll need:

  • 2 large zucchinis
  • 1/2 cup panko bread crumbs (whole wheat if you can find it)
  • 1/4 cup parmesan or romano cheese
  • 3 cloves of garlic, minced
  • whites of 2 eggs
  • 1/2 cup marinara

Serves two, 200 calories a serving. 
Note: Store bought marinara ranges from 30-50 calories for 1/4 cup if you want more for dipping!

Set the oven to 450 degrees. Slice the zucchini into roughly 1/2 inch thick slices. In a shallow dish, mix together the panko, parmesan, garlic and salt and pepper to taste. In a small bowl, crack the eggs and add only the whites, discarding the yolks. Get out a baking sheet and lightly grease it with spray olive oil. Set up your assembly line and follow the following steps...

  1. Take one zucchini slice at a time, dip it in the egg white, letting some of the excess egg white slide off before moving on to the next step. 
  2. Dip the egg white coated zucchini into the panko mix, making sure each side is evenly coated. Shake off excess panko mixture. 
  3. Line complete, coated zucchini on the baking sheet so they do not touch until all are done. 
Once all the zucchini slices are ready, pop it in the oven for about 25 minutes, or until the panko coating looks golden brown. 

Serve with marinara for dipping on the side. If you want to get extra fancy, garnish with chopped, fresh basil and a little extra parmesan. This works great as a dinner with a small plate of pasta or salad on the side, or as an appetizer. I served these with a garden fresh caprese salad last week for a perfect light Italian summer dinner. Cin cin!

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