Friday, August 19, 2011

Faux Fried Zucchini

So, around here, we love having appetizers for dinner.  What's not to love about appetizers?  They're usually packed with flavor, fun, and who can say anything bad about an entire dinner that you get to eat with your hands?  Sometimes I just put a couple together to make a full meal.  This is exactly what we did last night: we had polenta "fries" and faux-fried zucchini sticks and dipped them into a roasted tomato sauce.

Yes, I said faux-fried zucchini sticks.  In my opinion, few fake things are worth having, and I'd rather just live without.  I forgo in life fake coach purses and cubic zirconia.  Also, hair extensions appall me.

But these zucchini sticks are awesome!  They come from a Hungry Girl recipe.  To be honest, it took me a really long time to try a Hungry Girl recipe.  I've gotten the newsletter forever, but the recipes always reminded me too much of the kinds of concoctions that people talk about at WeightWatchers meetings.  Do you know what I'm talking about?  The kinds of things that women go on and on about at the meetings...often involving a can of pumpkin, cake mix, or a can of diet soda?  Plus, some of HungryGirl's ingredients didn't always do much for me (lots of Splenda, FiberOne, and LaughingCow cheese).  But once they started showing some of the new HungryGirl shows on Food Network, I was intrigued.  Really intrigued.  And I took the plunge.

You know what?  That HungryGirl writes an incredible recipe.  We have absolutely loved every single recipe of hers that we've tried.  Sure, I sometimes substitute out some of the Splenda or Laughing Cow Cheese.  But they're quick, easy, healthy, and incredibly, incredibly tasty.

And last night, I served my family zucchini coated in FiberOne.  And it was good.  Great.  But don't tell your family about the FiberOne until they clean their plates!

Cook's notes: You can find the original recipe here.  I made two changes: I cut the zucchini into spears.  I also used a tablespoon of a Mediterranean seasoning blend instead of the dry ranch seasoning mix.

Faux Fried Zucchini
adapted from Hungry Girl: 200 Under 200, by Lisa Lillien
serves 3

2 large zucchini; ends removed
3/4 cup Fiber One bran cereal (original); ground to a breadcrumb-like consistency in a blender or food processor
1/4 cup fat-free liquid egg substitute (like Egg Beaters)
1 tbsp. Mediterranean seasoning blend
1/4 tsp. plus 1 dash garlic powder
1/4 tsp. plus 1 dash onion powder
1/4 tsp. plus 1 dash oregano
2 dashes pepper
2 dashes salt 

Directions: 1.Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Cut zucchini into spears. Blot away any excess moisture with a paper towel. 
2. Fill a medium-sized dish with egg substitute, and season with a dash each of garlic powder, onion powder, oregano, salt, and pepper. In a separate medium-sized container, combine cereal breadcrumbs with 1/4 tsp. each of garlic powder, onion powder, and oregano -- add the Mediterranean seasoning blend and a dash each of salt and pepper, and then mix well. 
3. Set out a baking pan, and spray with nonstick spray. Toss zucchini spears in the egg substitute until they are all evenly covered. One by one, coat zucchini with breadcrumbs (giving them a shake first to remove excess egg substitute), and lay them flat on the baking pan. 
4. Place in the oven, and bake for 10 minutes. Flip zucchini circles over, and return to the oven for about 10 more minutes, or until outsides are crispy and zucchini is cooked through. 


  1. Very interesting. I think I would have been a little skeptical of the coating, but it looks like it works and was a hit!

  2. I also don't normally like Hungry Girl's recipes but you're right - she has some gems there! I want polenta fries too...

  3. Okay, I'll have to try one of her recipes - Hungry Girl kinda rubs me the wrong way for some reason!

    I've made polenta fries too - aren't they delicious!

  4. Interesting because I never cared for her recipes as they seemed all artificial. This does look very good though!

  5. I am such a super crazy HUGE fan of anything I can eat with my fingers. These look super yum!

  6. Love the Mediterranean seasonings. I'll have to pick up some Fiber One and give this a try. Extra fiber never hurt anyone. :)