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Zucchini Puff

Carol discovered this one in the Zucchini and Carrot Cookbook, and it is delicious. It’s so good and flavorful, and the zucchini flavor is so well blended in with the other ingredients, that when she served it to her father, a devout zucchini hater, he loved it!  Even went back for seconds, swearing all the while that it couldn’t be zucchini. This could be a side dish but it is also good as the main event. Serve it with a salad and a good crusty bread and it is all you need.

8 medium unpeeled zucchini (~2-3 pounds)
1 clove garlic, minced
¼ cup melted butter
¼ cup finely minced onion
4 large eggs, lightly beaten
½ cup coarse dry bread crumbs
1 cup grated cheddar cheese
2 tablespoons grated dry bread crumbs
2 teaspoons melted butter
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon black pepper

Scrub zucchini, remove tips, halve lengthwise and slice. Place in saucepan with ½ inch boiling water, salt, and the garlic. Cover and cook gently until tender, about 10 minutes. It is important to stop cooking the zucchini just as they become tender but before they become overly done and mushy. Otherwise the overcooked zucchini will be overly moist, and the soufflé will not come out dry.

Drain.  Put zucchini in a large mixing bowl (use electric mixer, if you have one). Beat until coarsely pureed with pieces of bright green zucchini skin still evident.

Mix in butter, onion and eggs. Fold in coarse bread crumbs and cheese.   Scoop into a well-buttered, 1½ quart baking dish. Top with grated bread crumbs, and drizzle the melted butter over them. Bake at 350 degrees about 45 minutes, until slightly puffed and brown. Once the soufflé begins to puff up it is important that it not be moved until it is done. If a knife inserted into the soufflé comes out dry it should be done. Serve immediately.


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