I’ve been buried in zucchini this week. And not just any variety of zucchini – an enormous and prolific type that calls for more effort than I’m ready to put forth in its preparation. First, I made a zucchini bread that was just OK, but a little sweet (I’ll try my hand at that again). Admittedly, I don’t care much for zucchini, or summer squash for that matter. I’d be fine if zucchini wasn’t in our garden, much less such a prominent character.
In spirit of waste-not-want not, I attempted a zucchini-centered meal the other night. Inspired by an ingredient I do love, the lemon, I adapted Heidi Swason’s Summer Squash Gratin into a satisfying and healthier version of a traditional squash casserole.
Do you have any good ideas about what to do with a zucchini? I’d love to hear them.
LEMONY ZUCCHINI CASSEROLE with OREGANO PISTOU
1.5 lbs of thin sliced zucchini (with peel on)
2 T lemon juice
Zest 1 lemon
1 16-oz can diced tomatoes
1/2 c. Torn day old bread
1/2 cup shredded parmesan cheese (or other shredded cheese of your liking)
4 T extra virgin olive oil
1/4 cup fresh oregano
Salt and pepper to taste
Preheat oven to 350*
Prepare a 9″x13″ dish
- First, make bread crumbs by covering torn bread in olive oil and baking for ~20 minutes
- In a bowl, mix zucchini, lemon zest, tomato sauce, 1/2 T olive oil, and a dash of salt and pepper
- To make pistou: In a food processor, puree lemon juice, fresh oregano, and remaining olive oil. Salt and pepper to taste.
- Layer 1/2 of zucchini mixture at the bottom of a 9″x13″ baking dish
- Top with 1/2 of the shredded cheese and drizzle with 1/2 of the oregano pistou. Repeat layering, topping final layer with the homemade breadcrumbs.
- Bake for 50 minutes until cheese is melted and golden, and zucchini is soft but not soggy.