If your zucchini happens to get a little bigger than you planned (sometimes they seem to double in size overnight!), then this is a great recipe to use them in. I wouldn't recommend using zucchini that are as big as your neighbor's dog, since they will be tough, seedy, and stringy, but you can use zucchini that have grown up to around 12" long; the bigger ones can be cut in pieces and grated in your food processor. Of course, you can grate your zucchini by hand, but it will take a little longer. I don't peel my zucchini because I want my family to get the folic acid, potassium, vitamin A, and of course, manganese, which are located mostly in the skin. Besides, the green skin gives these patties a great color.
I like to use the cooked bacon in the package that is found near the salad dressings in the grocery store; it’s a real time saver. If you want a great vegetarian main dish, then simply leave the bacon out.
2 medium zucchini, coarsely grated (about 3 cups)
1/2 cup flour
1 egg, beaten
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground pepper
1/4 cup cooked, crisp bacon, optional
2 cups panko (Japanese bread crumbs) or bread crumbs
1/4 - 1/2 cup butter
Mix the zucchini, flour, egg, and salt, pepper, and bacon if using. Place the panko or bread crumbs on a plate. Using a medium scoop (about 1/4 cup size), drop mounds of the zucchini mixture onto the panko, coating both sides and forming them into patties. Melt the butter in a skillet over medium heat; fry the patties until well-browned on each side. Serve immediately with Fresh Basil Tomato Sauce.
Note: Panko-Japanese bread crumbs are available at most larger supermarkets in the Asian section or in Asian groceries; they are crisper than regular bread crumbs.
Fresh Basil Tomato Sauce
4 medium Roma tomatoes, cored and quartered
1 clove garlic
1 tablespoon fresh basil leaves, torn (more or less to taste)
½ teaspoon salt
¼ teaspoon pepper
1 tablespoon olive oil
Place all ingredients in the bowl of a food processor and pulse until everything is chopped. Transfer to a small serving bowl. Cover and refrigerate until serving.