Sunday, September 6, 2009

Zucchini Pancakes

Well, I haven't posted in two weeks? How time flies! ;)

Once again, my garden is fairly bursting with zucchini and, once again, I have had to learn the hard way to pick them while they are still small. Jack doesn’t share this view, though, because his two favorite zucchini recipes are made from those larger forms of the vegetable—zucchini pancakes and fried zucchini.

Last week I was unable to get to the garden for a couple of days and, when I finally did, I found a huge zucchini lurking under some lower leaves. A full 2-1/2 pounds of zucchini, and Jack’s face lit up when he saw it on the kitchen counter.

We have zucchini pancakes, served with a tomato and basil salad, as a light lunch. Although Jack will eat them “plain”, he prefers his zucchini cakes to be topped with a spicy pepper-and-tomato sauce or simply some hot sauce.

Because when zucchini is prolific in my garden it is August and I resist turning on the stove, I use a Crock-Plate which my Mom gave me years ago. A cousin to the Crock-Pot, it doesn’t heat up the kitchen too much and I use it often in those hot summer months. Don’t look for it in WalMart, though, because this hasn’t been produced since the mid-1970’s. It’s way cool!

* Exported from MasterCook *

Zucchini Pancakes

Recipe By: Vicci

Serving Size: 2

Amount Measure Ingredient -- Preparation Method

--------- ---------- ---------------------------------------

4 cups shredded zucchini -- remove excess water; see note below

2/3 cup finely chopped onion

1/2 cup panko or whole wheat bread crumbs

3 large egg whites

1 ounce Asiago Cheese -- grated (a rounded 1/3 cup)

1/2 teaspoon kosher salt

1/2 teaspoon baking powder

1 tablespoon olive oil

Squeeze the zucchini and onion to remove excess water. Transfer to a large bowl and mix with the crumbs.

Whisk the egg whites, then whisk in the cheese through baking powder. Stir into the zucchini mixture.

Using a brush, spread one half of the oil (½ tablespoon) in a nonstick skillet, heat over medium heat and, when oil is hot, drop in half of the batter by scant 1/3 cupfuls. Flatten to desired thickness. Cook for 4-6 minutes per side, or until golden brown. Remove to a paper-towel lined plate (or serve) and cook the remaining half of the batter using the remaining ½ tablespoon of oil.


"8 4" diameter cakes"

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Per serving: 194 Calories (kcal); 11g Total Fat (4g Saturated); (49% calories from fat); 12g Protein; 13g Carbohydrate; 13mg Cholesterol; 856mg Sodium

Food Exchanges: 0 Grain(Starch); 1 Lean Meat; 2 Vegetable; 0 Fruit; 2 Fat; 0 Other Carbohydrates

NOTES : Two pounds of zucchini, excess water removed, yields about one pound of dry, shredded zucchini. One pound of shredded, well-squeezed zucchini equals about 4 cups.

A simple way to remove excess water from a quantity of shredded zucchini is to place the zucchini shreds in the center a large, clean kitchen towel. Fold ends over (on all four sides) to enclose the shredded zucchini and PIN SECURELY with a safety pin. Place this packet in your washing machine, kind of propped up against an outer wall. Turn the machine to "spin" and spin for at least 4 minutes. Remove very carefully, and open the towel over a large cutting board.

Now, before you forget, go back to the washing machine, add a gallon of tap water (I use a watering can), and turn it to "spin" once more. The green, veggie-based water which you see coming out of the machine is not water in which you want to wash your clothes! And if you wash the kitchen towel right away, in hot soapy water, the green zucchini stains will come out. I, however, have a towel reserved only for spinning zucchini (with a large safety pin attached) that I just wash with the rest of my towels, and I don't worry about the stains.

This method gets a lot of the excess water out of the zucchini and produces dry, fluffy shreds. If the zucchini is too wet, the pancakes (and other baked goods which shredded zucchini is used in) will have an unappetizing, gummy texture.