zucchini casserole

I've been on the lookout the past few weeks for healthier recipes. I'm not exactly cooking with a stick of butter every time I hit the kitchen ... but it is always nice to try and be a little more conscious.

This recipe isn't going to blow your mind like a good beef stew or seared fish dinner. Let's be real it's zucchini and feta cheese. But, it's a very decent meal and especially if you are trying to be a little more calorie conscious.

The original recipe notes recommended that this wouldn't be great for freezing .... and you'd be best to re-heat in an oven as opposed to a microwave. While I didn't test the freezer, I did test out the microwave and I might have to agree with them. That being said, I definetly still reheated all my leftovers in the microwave but the textures in this dish are rather "delicate" and so they just don't hold up that well in a microwave. Plus, you lose the crunch of the panko flakes in a microwave. Sad face.

I'm looking forward to making this in the summer when zucchini is plentiful from my Dad's garden. Hello free fresh vegetables!

Modifications for the future? This is a great base and I can see adding in some shredded chicken for a little more sustenance or additional veggies like artichokes. I'll put artichokes in anything these days.

Enough chatter. Here's how it goes.

(Step 1) Preheat oven to 375F. Slice the zucchini into half-moon pieces. The easiest way would be to use a mandoline ... I used a knife.
(Step 2) Heat olive oil in large non-stick frying pan, add garlic and thyme leaves and saute about 45 seconds. Attempt to prevent the garlic from browning. Add squash slices and saute about 4 minutes, turning a few times.
(Step 3) While squash cooks, break eggs into a small bowl or glass measuring cup and beat until egg yolks and whites are combined. Stir in sour cream, feta, parmesan, and lemon juice.

(Step 4) Spray a 2 quart gratin dish or glass casserole dish with non-stick spray or olive oil. Layer half the squash in the dish, then season with salt and fresh ground black pepper.

(Step 5) Pour over half the egg-feta mixture and use the back of a spoon or a rubber scraper to spread it over the squash. Repeat with another layer of squash and the rest of the feta-egg mixture. Top with panko crumbs. 
(Step 6) Bake at 375F for 40-45 minutes, or until the mixture is bubbling, slightly set, and top if lightly browned. Serve hot.
Shopping List
8 cups sliced squash
Olive Oil
1 T minced garlic
2 T fresh thyme leaves or 1 T dried thyme
2 large eggs
1/3 cup light sour cream
1 cup crumbled feta (not tightly packed)
2 T grated parmesan cheese
1 T lemon juice
salt and fresh ground black pepper to taste
1/4 cup panko flakes

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