July 3, 2008

Mmmmm . . . Fried Zucchini

Oh, is this not what you expected? Were you thinking of those little rounds dipped in batter and deep fried? Sorry, but this is MUCH better!

This is how my Daddy's mom fixed zucchini, and boy is it good.

Here's what you'll need to get started . . .

Garden-fresh zucchini (or zucchini from your favorite grocer), olive oil, black pepper, salt, flour and sugar. That's it!

Start by slicing your zucchini into rounds. I aim for about 1/8 inch slices, but I'm not an expert with the knife, so I range from paper thin to about 1/4 inch. It all works.

Pour in just enough oil to cover the bottom of your cast iron skillet. It must be cast iron. If not, this just doesn't work. I don't have any idea why, but I've tried non-stick and stainless and both failed miserably. Heat on Medium--once the cast iron is hot, it will retain the heat. If you get the skillet too hot to start with, it's hard to bring the temperature back down without burning the zucchini.

Spread a layer of zucchini in the bottom of the skillet.

Add a layer of flour (2-3 tablespoons--just a light layer)

and a layer of sugar (again a couple of tablespoons)

then sprinkle in some salt (I like the way kosher salt sprinkles evenly and sticks to the food)

add some fresh ground pepper (I like a lot of pepper to offset the sweetness).

Repeat the layers until your skillet is full or you run out of zucchini.

Place a lid on top to allow the zucchini to steam and the flour/sugar mixture to get gooey from all the moisture. I use a glass lid so I can see when the zucchini begins to cook through. At this point, begin carefully turning the zucchini up from the bottom. Replace the lid and cook a few minutes more, then turn again. (This may take a few times to get all the zucchini cooked and the flour/sugar moist. It depends on how full your skillet is.)

You'll know it's time to leave the lid off when most all of the flour is gooey and the zucchini is translucent and soft. Now, leave the zucchini at least 3-4 minutes between each time that you turn it so the gooey flour/sugar mixture has a chance to brown. Once it's browned, it's called 'goody' and looks like this:

In all honesty, I could have let this brown a bit longer, but I was hungry!

Here you have it, my Grandma's famous (well, not really, but it should be) Fried Zucchini.


P.S. Thanks Grandma. I know Heaven is all the sweeter with Grandaddy by your side.