No deep fryer needed for this delicious vegetable treat!
Crispy zucchini sticks and dip are a big favourite in my house but I wanted to see if I could lighten up this pub-style treat. This fat-free, oven-baked version is full of flavour and amazingly easy to prepare. I am not even sure if my taste testers noticed that they weren’t deep fried! Serve with your favourite dipping sauce – I’ve included a recipe below, but commercially-prepared salad dressings like Ranch or Caesar are also pretty tasty with these zucchini sticks or, for a change of pace, you can offer up Sweet Chili Sauce too!
For the zucchini sticks:
- 1 cup (250 mL) Panko (Japanese-style breadcrumbs)
- 1/2 cup (125 mL) freshly grated Parmesan cheese
- 1/2 teaspoon (2.5 mL) each dried oregano and basil
- 1/4 teaspoon (1.25 mL) each salt and freshly ground black pepper
- 4 slender zucchini, quartered lengthwise
- 1/2 cup (125 mL) all-purpose flour
- 2 large eggs, beaten
For the dip:
- 1/4 cup (60 mL) sour cream
- 4 teaspoons (20 mL) fresh lemon juice
- 1 tablespoon (15 mL) finely chopped fresh dill or basil or 1/2 teaspoon (2.5 mL) dried
- salt and pepper, to taste
- Preheat oven to 425F. Drizzle 1 teaspoon (5 mL) of vegetable oil on a piece of paper towel and use it to wipe the surface of a wire cooling rack. Place the rack on a parchment-lined baking sheet and set aside.
- In a broad dish (a pie plate or round cake pan works well), combine Panko, Parmesan, oregano, basil, salt and pepper. Set aside.
- In a second broad dish, beat the eggs with a fork until well blended.
- Put the zucchini sticks in a plastic bag and sprinkle flour over top. Twist the top of the bag shut and gently shake the bag to coat the zucchini sticks.
- Remove the zucchini sticks from the bag one a time. Tap one end against your work surface to remove excess flour then dip the stick in the eggs. Place the flour and egg-coated zucchini in the Panko mixture and press gently to coat, flipping the stick to coat all sides.
- Place zucchini onto prepared cooling rack; when all are coated, put the tray in the oven.
- While zucchini sticks cook, combine dip ingredients in a small bowl and stir to blend well.
- Bake for 18 – 22 minutes, or until golden brown and crispy.
- Serve immediately.
Makes 16 sticks, enough for 2 – 3 servings.
This original recipe (created by me) first appeared on ymc.ca.