I realize it’s a little past “zucchini season” but since I’m pretty sure most of you can still get zucchini in the store pretty much anytime you want to, I decided to do this post anyway. During “zucchini season” I am always looking for different ways to use up the BOUNTY of this green stuff! This year I finally got wise and decided that instead of trying to use them IN a recipe that I would make them THE recipe!
Since we are huge fans of “chips” in general, making zucchini chips seemed like a natural choice. To be honest, I wasn’t even sure that it would work, but I’m always willing to try anything once! Well, in this case….twice. The FIRST batch I made pretty much turned to ash. Cooked them WAY too long. The second batch, however, were marvelous and had me wondering why I’d never tried this before!
Since there’s really not much of a “recipe” involved here….I will instead give you some tips…..or……Jillee’s DON’TS for making Zucchini chips!
Tip #1 – Don’t cook them too long!
The original “recipe” I looked at called for cooking the chips for 1 1/2 to 3 hours at 250 degrees. At the end of 90 minutes the super thin slices of zucchini had practically turned to ash. :-( So I did a little more research and found that a higher temp for a shorter time resulted in a much more satisfactory chip. My recommendation: 450 degrees for 25 to 30 minutes.
Tip #2 – Don’t slice them too thin.
I used my handy, dandy mandolin (that I recently bought and proceeded to almost immediately cut my finger off! BE CAREFUL!) The first batch I sliced TOO THIN and cooked TOO LONG, and like I said above, they were pretty much burnt to a crisp. The second batch I sliced twice as thick and they turned out perfectly. It’s tempting to slice them very thin, thinking they will be crispier that way, but trust me on this. Thinner is not better in this case.
Tip #3 – Don’t overdo it on the olive oil.
This is very easy to do, but will severely hamper your attempts to make these chips CRISPY! I tend to think the more oil, the better….but in this case…the more oil…the less crispy. Pretty much defeats the whole purpose of making “chips”. I’ve never met a “chip” I didn’t like….UNLESS it was a limp chip! Not good. One tablespoon of olive oil should be more than enough!
Tip #4 – Don’t overdo it on the salt.
The benefit of having to do this “recipe” twice is that I was able to work out the kinks and the result was a much more satisfactory result. Much to my doctor’s chagrin, I am a HUGE salt fiend. So the temptation is to put plenty of salt on these babies. But even *I* thought the first batch was too salty! They really don’t need more than a light dusting of the white stuff. Again, trust me on this!
Tip #5 – Don’t be afraid to experiment!
I made mine very plain…but you could easily add some freshly grated Parmesan cheese or some bread crumbs to give them a little extra crunch and/or flavor!
I hope you enjoy these as much as I did! Not only are they a great way to utilize the bounty of zucchini from the garden each year…..they are a delicious and healthier alternative to regular chips!