There are so many things to love about summer. Long evenings, a plethora of outdoor activities, sun streaks in your hair and no need for an excuse to get ice cream. I also love the abundance of fresh fruits and vegetables that are readily available at your local grocery store, or better yet, hand-delivered to your office by a regular mall walker.
Imagine my shock and delight upon receiving not one, but two foot-long (plus!) zucchinis. I often purchase the ones in the grocery produce section that barely reach lengths worth boasting about. They’re great and totally manageable. This green guy was huge! And so was his buddy.
So what does one do with an overwhelming zucchini? Start by turning it into some version of french fries, of course. I found recipes from some of my favorite bloggers for delicious endeavors like Zucchini Bread Pancakes and Zucchini Sweet Potato Bread. Gosh, those sound good. But I’m relatively new to the food blogging world and like any good novice, I’m well aware of my boundaries and prefer to experiment off-camera. Fries? No problem.
Zucchini is a strong source of key antioxidant nutrients such as the carotenoids lutein and zeaxanthin.
The skin of this food is particularly antioxidant-rich, so be sure to keep it intact and skip the peeling.
Parmesan Zucchini Fries
loosely adapted from Swanson Vitamins
Heat oil in a skillet. If you have an oil thermometer, aim for 375 degrees for optimal frying.
Cut your zucchini ends off and slice lengthwise in half. Begin cutting zucchini planks, then stack and slice into strips. Set aside.
In a small bowl, whisk together flour, cayenne pepper and cornstarch. Prepare another small bowl by mixing the bread crumbs, parmesan cheese and italian seasoning. Use a third bowl to whisk your two eggs.
Grab a fistful of zucchini sticks and roll them in the flour mixture until coated evenly. Next, dip them in the egg until covered, then roll them in the bread crumb mix. If you can use one hand to dip the zucchini in the dry mixtures and and the other to dip in the egg mixture, then you’ll be more successful at keeping the coating on the fries and off of your hands. I can’t do that. I’m all hands in and then I remember what I should be doing. You can do it. Rise above and report back.
Carefully place your coated zucchini sticks into the hot oil and watch them turn into golden brown fries. Flip to even cook all sides, then place on a paper towel. Repeat.
I live by dousing my regular fries in ketchup. But these are no regular fries and ketchup just won’t do. I whipped up a super simple spicy ranch: 1 part Sriracha to 2 parts Ranch Dressing. Wowza!