Zucchini Pizza Bake.

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Oh, hello. No, I’m not dead. Did I mention that I suck at blogging? Yes? Well I suck at blogging and now everybody knows..

Now that that’s settled (I’m sorry, I love you.), I have a recipe for you. I made this the first time a few weeks ago and Adam went bananas over it. Any way I can get him to eat more vegetables–I’m happy. I make it seem like he’s a small child…he’s not. He’s just picky about vegetables on their own. Not in this case. Casseroles in general are pretty hideous and I suck at photography so, bear with me here. She ain’t pretty but she sure was good.

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This is a great way to use up your end-of-summer zucchini haul as well as a lot of items you probably have in your fridge or pantry right now. Also, I feel like any kid would love this. It’s cheesy and delicious and you don’t even have to tell them that there are vegetables in it. If you lie to your kids, or whatever. No judgement here.

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Zucchini Pizza Bake
Yields 6 Servings

Ingredients:

  • 4 cups zucchini (with skin), shredded (about 4 medium zucchini)
  • 2 eggs
  • 2 1/2 cups shredded cheese of your choice, divided (I used mozz, parm & fontina. I’m fancy as hell. The last time I made this I used sharp cheddar and it was divine.)
  • 2 turkey italian sausage links, casings removed (you can totally use beef, ground turkey, whatever you want)
  • 2 bell peppers, seeded and diced
  • 1 c. mushrooms, chopped
  • 1 small onion, diced
  • 1 T. minced garlic
  • 1 jar chunky pasta sauce (I made my own)
  • 1 tsp. dried basil
  • 1 tsp. cracked black pepper
  • pinch of red pepper flakes (optional)
  • parmesan cheese for sprinkling

Directions:

Preheat your oven to 400 degrees. Start by grating the zucchini and set aside. Place several paper towels in a fine mesh strainer or colander and add in grated zucchini. Sprinkle with salt and let sit for 10-15 minutes (or longer) to release moisture. It will give off a LOT of liquid, so if you need to, spoon the zucchini into a few paper towels, roll and then press out as much liquid as you can. They don’t have to be bone dry but it’s important that you drain them as much as possible. Place the drained zucchini into a large mixing bowl and add in the eggs and 1 c. of the shredded cheese–mix until combined. Grease the bottom and sides of a 9×13″ baking dish with non-stick spray and spread zucchini mixture into the pan. Bake for 20 minutes until set.

While crust is baking, prepare the topping. Heat a few tablespoons of oil in a large saute pan over medium heat. Add in de-cased turkey sausage and cook until no longer pink. Set aside. Add in the minced garlic to the cooking oil and stir until fragrant, about 1 minute. Add in the rest of the vegetables and saute over medium heat until softened, about 8 minutes. Add sausage back into pan and add in the jar of sauce with the spices. Stir until combined.

Once crust layer has set, remove from oven and spoon sauce mixture over the top. Sprinkle with remaining cheese and top with parmesan. Bake for an additional 15-20 minutes until golden brown and melty. That’s important. That’s the good stuff.

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It is absolutely delicious. Delicious enough that Adam had 3/4 of the pan because he was raving about it. That’s a feat in itself. You could really tweak this any way to make it work for you–different vegetables, different meats. Maybe a layer of thin sliced pepperoni? Or meat-free if you roll that way! I’m sure it will be delicious either way.

Enjoy, my friends.

Becka

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