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lazy vegetarians are everywhere. this is a collection of easy recipes and tips for dining out for vegetarians with little time or effort.

Thursday, October 22, 2009

Zucchini Parm: lets make something healthy into something bad for you!

I love zucchini parmigiana.
My mom used to make it for my siblings and I in a probably attempt to just sneak some vegetables into our stomachs.
The recipe is pretty simple, but takes a little time.  You can make it a bit quicker if you deep fry the zucchini, but it's slightly healthier to bake it.  
It's not vegan friendly, but you can probably sub in an egg replacement in the breading step and some vegan mozzarella in the final part and do just as well as the non-vegan way.
Preheat your oven to about 350.
The first step is to select a nice big zucchini.  This also works with eggplant, but my favorite is zucchini.
Slice the zucchini on a slant to create longer slices, so you have more surface to bread.
Coat a baking dish (the one I use is 9x13 Corningware) with butter or margarine (Earth Balance will make this step vegan) and set it aside. 
Crack the eggs into one bowl, and stir with a whisk or fork.  Fill another bowl with bread crumbs and a little Old Bay, stir and set the two bowls next to each other.
Dip the slices into the bread crumbs, then into the egg, then bread crumbs again. 
Place them in the baking dish.  I used a couple of baking dishes for the first bake so that all of the slices can bake evenly, then layer them when I add the sauce and cheese.
Once all of the slices are neatly arranged in the dish, put a generous amount of the butter or margarine throughout the dish and bake it for about ten minutes.
Take out the dish and flip them over.  If it looks a little dry, add some more margarine. 
Once both sides are golden brown, take it out and get the cheese and sauce.
Cover the zucchini with sauce and cheese leaving a nice layer of cheese on the top.  Mix in your favorite Italian seasonings to the sauce just to liven it up a little.
Bake this again until the cheese is toasted nicely. 
You can eat it just like this or serve it over spaghetti for an easy dinner.   The leftovers re-heat well, too, so just sprinkle some shredded cheese on each serving and pop it in the microwave later in the week.

Ingredients:
1 large zucchini or multiple smaller ones
3-4 eggs
bread crumbs
about 1-2 sticks of margarine (depending on taste and how unhealthy you are willing to make this)
1 jar of marinara sauce (i like to use a tomato and basil sauce for this to add some flavor or sometimes arribiata sauce to make it nice and spicy)
Mozzarella cheese, shredded or sliced

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