Inga's Indulgence

Monday, February 13, 2012

Comfort Conundrum

Oh how I love fried stuff.

It's amazing how much you can love something that you barely allow yourself to sink your teeth into. But those few moments of crispy, caloric ecstasy are just enough to...

A) remind me of everything I've been missing
B) convince me that I no longer fit into the jeans I was rocking yesterday
C) want to eat nothing but fried things for ever and ever

Sooo, what is a girl to do in this predicament? Bake.

Healthy Zucchini Mozzarella Sticks
(yield: 12-14 sticks)
These guys are crispy on the outside, gooey and cheesy on the inside courtesy of my old pal, the oven. AND they've got veg in them.
Is this what I'm talkin' about or what? This is what I'm talking about.

8 oz part-skim mozzarella cheese
1 medium zucchini
1/2 cup whole wheat flour
2 eggs, beaten with 1 tbsp water
1 cup Italian Bread Crumbs
olive oil, as needed

Grease an aluminum foil lined sheet pan with olive oil.

Slice the mozzarella lengthwise into 1/2-inch sticks, and set aside. Using a vegetable peeler, shave long, paper-thin slices of zucchini, about 1-2 inches wide. Arrange 5-6 slices in an overlapping fashion to equal the length of the mozzarella sticks. Place a mozzarella stick across the zucchini slices (perpendicular to the zucchini) and wrap tightly.

                                                   Trim off excess zucchini.

Dredge the wrapped mozzarella sticks in flour, followed by egg wash, and then breadcrumbs. Repeat with another coating of egg wash and bread crumbs. Place on prepared sheet pan, and freeze for at least 1 hour.

Bake in a 425 degree oven for 16-18 minutes, until golden brown and crispy. Serve with Marinara Sauce (recipe follows).


Marinara Sauce

1 tbsp olive oil
1/2 of a small yellow onion, finely chopped
2 cloves garlic, finely chopped
1, 15 oz can crushed tomatoes
1/4 tsp dried oregano
1/4 tsp dried basil
salt & pepper, to taste

Briefly heat the oil in a medium saucepan, and sweat the onions and garlic 2-3 minutes. Add the crushed tomatoes, oregano, basil, salt, and pepper. Simmer 10 minutes.

Depending on how chunky you like your sauce, you can either leave it alone or puree in a food processor or blender.

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