Monday, September 5, 2011

Parmesan-Crusted Zucchini & Potatoes

Ask most people to list their favorite vegetables, and I would bet that a majority of the time zucchini won't make the top ten. It's nothing to hold against the poor veggie... like any other squash, if prepared by an amateur hand, it can be woody and flavorless, or worse, limp and soggy. The zucchini can be a fickle friend, requiring a little extra attention in order to shine.

But, like a diamond in the rough, you'll totally be rewarded for your extra effort in the end.

Dane and I were definitely among the majority of zucchini non-enthusiasts before this recipe. But it's amazing what a little crisping and Parmesan can do. Before I even told him what was in it, Dane took a couple bites of this and exclaimed, "Whatever you did to the zucchini and potatoes - AHmazing! I could eat this 7 days a week." Winning!

Yes, the potatoes are delicious in this recipe too... but I'm less impressed because, for me, potatoes taste good 99% of the time, no matter what you do to them. But the zucchini is the truly dramatic component here. The pan-frying step creates a beautiful crispy crust and brings out the signature sweetness of the squash... no woodiness here! Add in some fresh thyme, earthy rosemary, and salty Parmesan, and you've got an irresistible combination of early fall flavors. Give this a try and join the ranks of zucchini-lovers everywhere!

Parmesan-Crusted Zucchini & Potatoes
adapted from Giada's Kitchen
yields 4 servings

6 small red potatoes, cut into 1-inch pieces
2 tablespoons unsalted butter
1 garlic clove, minced
1 teaspoon chopped fresh thyme leaves
1 teaspoon chopped fresh rosemary leaves
2 small zucchini, cut in half lengthwise and then cut into 1-inch pieces
pinch of kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
1/4 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese

1. Bring a medium pot of water to a boil over high heat. Add the potatoes and cook just until tender, 5-8 minutes. Drain the potatoes and let cool.
2. Place a medium saute pan over medium heat. Add the butter, garlic, thyme, and rosemary and heat until the butter melts. Meanwhile, season the potatoes and zucchini with salt and pepper. Carefully place the zucchini and potatoes cut-side down in the melted butter. Cook until golden brown, 8-12 minutes.
3. Preheat the broiler. Line a baking sheet with foil. Place the browned zucchini and potatoes on the baking sheet cut side up. Sprinkle the tops with Parmesan. Broil until the cheese is golden brown, about 4 minutes. Transfer to a plate and serve.


  1. MMM, this dish looks wonderful! What a great side dish!

  2. I've never paired zucchini with potatoes, but I'd be more than willing to. I'm one of those weird ones that adores zucchini and have since I was a wee lass. Dudette can't stand it though, so this may just have to be lunch someday. Thanks for sharing!

  3. I think this looks like a great way to sneak some of my extra zucchini from the garden into dinner. Looks wonderful!

  4. You just can't beat potatoes and cheese..throw anything else in, and its just a bonus!

    What a great way to use up that bumper crop of zucchini hanging on the plants out there.

  5. Zucchini would be in my Top 10 - I'm weird lol

    But I've never paired them with potatoes, let alone crisped them up with parmesan - definitely gonna have to give this one a go =)

  6. Oooh, I love Parm on both zucchini and potatoes! What a yummy combination here~


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