I have a problem.
I can’t stop baking things with panko bread crumbs. Not sure what is up, I mean, aside from the fact that it’s all so yummy. Maybe it has to do with the fact that I have a ginormous box of panko bread crumbs from Costco sitting in my pantry and I feel that I should use it up…Nah, scratch that, it’s the yummy thing, that’s the real reason.
I used to get this baked eggplant stack thing at a restaurant me and my co-workers in Florida would go to every Friday for happy hour. You can never go wrong with anything that involves fresh mozzarella and tomatoes, am I right? Anyway, I wanted to make my own appetizer at home. I was going to use eggplant, but then spotted a bunch of zucchini that was on sale and decided to use that instead.
Crispy zucchini slices stacked with fresh tomato, fresh mozzarella, fresh basil (did you get that this is all very fresh?), and then drizzled with a sweet balsamic glaze. That’s what these stacks are all about. Make ‘em for your friends, make ‘em for yourself, it doesn’t matter, just make ‘em when you feel the need to be a little fancy.
- 2/3 cup balsamic vinegar
- 1 tbs. brown sugar
- 1 zucchini, sliced into about 12 1-inch slices
- 1 large egg, beaten
- 1/4 cup whole wheat flour
- 2/3 cup panko bread crumbs
- 1/4 tsp. salt
- Baked zucchini slices
- fresh mozarella, sliced
- 3 Roma tomatoes, sliced
- balsamic glaze
- fresh basil
- Preheat the oven to 425 degrees. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper and spray with non-stick spray.
- To prepare the baked zucchini, beat the egg in a shallow bowl. In another bowl, mix together the flour, panko bread crumbs, and the salt.
- Dip each slice of the zucchini into the egg and then into the bread crumb mixture. After all of the slices have been coated, arrange them on the baking sheet and spray the tops with non-stick spray. Bake for about 10 minutes, flip them over and then bake for another 5 minutes or until the slices are golden.
- To make the glaze, add the balsamic vinegar and stir in the brown sugar in a small sauce pan on medium heat. Bring to a simmer and heat until the vinegar is reduced by half. Turn off the heat, but leave the pan on the stove.
- To make the stacks, layer with a slice of zucchini, followed by a tomato slice and then the mozzarella. Repeat. Drizzle some of the glaze on top. Garnish with fresh basil. Serve promptly.
These are best served while the zucchini is hot right out of the oven.