Our recipe of the week comes From Kalyns Kitchen A great cooking blog for more recipes go and check it out!

This is a tasty casserole or side dish made with those inevitable monster zucchinis!

Cut away the seeds on each piece, leaving about 3/8 inch of the white flesh.

Then cut the strips into small pieces like this.

Heat the oil in a large frying pan over medium-high heat.  Then add the zucchini and saute 2-3 minutes.

Beat the eggs with the 1/2 cup coarsely grated Parmesan.

Bake 35-45 minutes or until the mixture is well set and lightly browned on top.  Serve hot.

Monster Zucchini and Basil Strata
(Makes 8 servings, recipe created by Kalyn with inspiration from a blog that no longer exists.)

1 monster zucchini, 14-16 inches long
(or use several smaller ones but don’t cut out seeds and saute for a shorter time)
2 T olive oil
1-2 tsp. Spike Seasoning
(or use any all-purpose seasoning that’s good on vegetables)
salt and fresh-ground black pepper to taste
1/2 cup chopped fresh basil
3/4 cup grated Mozzarella cheese (I used low-fat Mozzarella)
6 eggs
2 T milk, half and half, or cream (I used 2% milk)

1/2 cup + 1/2 cup coarsely grated Parmesan or Asiago  (If you only have finely grated Parmesan I would use a little less)

Preheat oven to 400F/200C.  Use a 10 X 12 glass casserole dish for this and spray with olive oil or nonstick spray.

Wash zucchini, then cut off ends and cut in half crosswise to get manageable sized pieces.  Cut each half into fourths (or sixths) lengthwise. Use a spoon or small knife to scrape away the seeds and most of the white inside, leaving about 3/8 inch of white attached to the skin. Then cut each strip crosswise into pieces about 3/8 inch wide.

Heat olive oil in large nonstick frying pan, add zucchini and saute 2-3 minutes over medium-high heat. Add Spike and fresh basil and saute 2-3 minutes more, seasoning the zucchini with salt and fresh ground black pepper. (Zucchini should be barely starting to soften.)

Put zucchini into casserole dish with the Mozzarella cheese.  Combine eggs, milk, and 1/2 cup coarsely grated Parmesan or Asiago and beat well. Pour egg mixture over zucchini and cheese and gently stir so it’s well combined, with some zucchini pieces “peeking” out of the egg. Sprinkle the other 1/2 cup Parmesan or Asiago over top.

Bake 35-45 minutes, or until the mixture is well set and slightly browned on top.  Serve hot.

The flavors in this dish are similar to Easy Cheesy Zucchini Bake, which is the recipe I would probably use if I had regular-sized zucchini.

South Beach Suggestions:
With low-fat mozzarella and milk, this recipe would be a good side dish or main dish for any phase of the South Beach Diet or any type of low-glycemic eating plan.  As a main dish, I’d pair this with something like a Perfect Lettuce Salad or Mediterranean Salad with Hummus Dressing.

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