Parmigiana is a delicious Italian dish usually made with Aubergines, also known as Eggplant. I am making this Courgette/Zucchini Parmigiana with courgettes/zucchini rather than Aubergines/Eggplant because a) we love courgettes/zucchini and b) I really don’t like the taste of Aubergines/Eggplants!
This parmigiana is full of traditional Mediterranean flavours from the roasted tomato sauce that I made previously. It’s gluten-free and a source of calcium. A great family meal.
Courgettes/Zucchini are really just a baby marrow, a member of the squash family. They are high in fibre and water and also contain good amounts of vitamins B2, B6, folic acid, C, and K, potassium and manganese.
Courgettes/Zucchini are rich in health-protecting antioxidants and anti-inflammatory phytonutrients. These help rid the body of free radicals and excess inflammation.
They contain high amounts of vitamin C and polyphenols, especially in the skin. Another reason to leave the skins on!
is a courgette/zucchini a vegetable?
You’d expect it to be but no! Like a Tomato and Butternut Squash, the humble courgette/zucchini is botanically a fruit but eaten as a vegetable! The rule seems to be, if an edible plant has seeds, it is classed as a fruit. Seems quite clear, but then Rhubarb is classed as a vegetable under those rules and Sweet corn is a fruit! Mad, eh!
how to prepare courgette/zucchini parmigiana
All you need are courgettes/zucchini, egg wash, flour, seasoning, tomato sauce (not ketchup!) and 2 types of cheeses. The courgettes/zucchini are sliced thinly, coated in egg wash, then flour and either fried or roasted until golden. The ingredients are then layered, tomato sauce, courgettes/zucchini, cheeses. Repeat this sequence until the last layer is just tomato sauce and cheeses.
The parmigiana is then roasted for 20-30 minutes until the cheesy crust is golden and bubbling! We serve with extra vegetables on the side.
can courgette/zucchini parmigiana be made in advance?
Yes, definitely. The tomato sauce can be made a couple of days previously and kept in the fridge or frozen. The parmegiana can be assembled the day before, refrigerated and baked the next day.
- 3 large courgettes/zucchini, washed and thinly sliced lengthwise
- 1 large egg, beaten
- Flour, use enough to lightly coat courgettes/zucchini
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- Roasted Tomato Sauce, see recipe link in post*
- 375 grams/13½ ounces Mozzarella, sliced or cubed
- 100 grams/3½ ounces Parmesan cheese, grated
- Black Pepper to season
- Pre-heat your oven to 180C/350F.
- Take the sliced courgettes/zucchini and dip in the beaten egg, then into the flour. Shake any excess flour off.
- Heat 2 tablespoons of olive oil in a frying pan and fry the sliced courgette/zucchini in batches until golden. Drain on a paper towel. Repeat with the rest of the courgette/zucchini slices.
- Drain the mozzarella then cut into slices or cubes.
- Spread 1 ladle of tomato sauce on the bottom of a 20 centimetre/8 inch square baking dish. Add a layer of zucchini slices, then some mozzarella and grated parmesan.
- Repeat the layers: tomato sauce, courgette/zucchini slices, mozzarella and parmesan until you get to the final layer which is just tomato sauce, mozzarella and parmesan.
- Season with black pepper.
- Bake for 20-30 minutes or until the mozzarella has melted and the outside edges are golden and crisp.
- Take out of oven and let rest for a few minutes to firm up before serving.
If you are egg-free just coating in flour will be fine too.
*This amount of roasted tomato sauce should be sufficient for this recipe.