This. Shit. Is. Gold.
Looking back, maybe not the most appetizing phrase, but it was the first thing I thought of to explain how amazing this snack is.
Now that you've had some time to perfect your tomato sauce with my previous recipe, I wanted to give you something to put it on other than gluten free pasta. Actually, you could put it on anything, or even make it a main - add a little milk and spice for tomato basil soup with grilled cheese(!) - but today, I want to go as simple as possible.
Last week I read about zucchini pizza bites - taking zucchini slices and throwing them in the oven with sauce and cheese and whatever other toppings you like. Seems too good to be true, but I wanted to make the zucchini a little more pizza-like ( crunchy) before tossing it in to cook. None of the recipes I looked at Seemed to agree, so I did a little playing around and ended up with a delicious pizza alternative. Unfortunately, I made these when no one else was home, so I had a whole zucchini's worth of pizza (read: a non-literal shitload of pizza bites). That meant that even though this was a "healthy" lunch, I still managed to feel as full and satisfied as I do after eating a whole basket of chips at a Mexican restaurant. Minus the bloated-from-salt fingers, thank god.
The final process: pan sear zucchini slices, drain excess oil, add sauce, cheese and other faves and broil. Voila! An amazing lunch/dinner/app is ready to go. And with my favorite sauce, you'll have a slightly spicy, sweet rich base that cannot be outdone.
Serves: 8-10 as app, 4 as part of a meal
Total Time: 20 minutes
2 tablespoons olive oil
2 large zucchini, washed, sliced into 1/4 inch rounds (thick enough that they'll hold toppings, but thin enough that they'll be crunchy after searing) and patted completely dry
1-1 1/2 cups tomato sauce
1 1/2 cups shredded mozzarella or cheddar (I know it's not the recommended pizza cheese, but goddamn does it go well with this sauce, and Sharp cheddar gives it a nice bite with the veggies!)
Add olive oil to pan over medium-high heat.
Once pan is hot and oil is evenly distributed, add zucchini without overlapping slices. Batches are recommended, especially if you don't have a large pan or wok! Cook 2-3 minutes, or until each slice has a little brown sear, then use tongs to flip. Cook another 2 or so minutes (eyeballing is key depending on the thickness of your slices).
Set oven to broil, making sure you leave the oven door slightly ajar. Drain excess oil (maybe even leave slices on paper towels for a minute) then place slices on two foil-lined cookie sheets. Use a spoon to evenly distribute sauce, then sprinkle cheese and any other toppings (some people slice tiny pepperoni slices, if I liked pepperoni I'd be all about that life so do yo thang, honey).
Broil bites and watch like a hawk! As soon as those puppies start to bubble, pull out of the oven and serve hot.