Saturday, July 18, 2015

Prosciutto Wrapped Zucchini with Pesto and Mozzarella

I've seen many recipes for prosciutto wrapped asparagus spears, but never zucchini.  In this recipe, I created a small hollow down the center of the zucchini and filled it with pesto and firm mozzarella before wrapping it with the prosciutto and sauteing it in a skillet.  The prosciutto becomes crispy and encases the filling nicely.  This makes a wonderful side dish or, if cut into squares, a perfectly delightful appetizer or snack!  If you're looking for another creative way to enjoy your vegetables, I highly recommend you give this recipe a try.

Prosciutto Wrapped Zucchini with Pesto and Mozzarella
Makes 4 side dish servings or about 12 appetizers

1 medium zucchini (about 8" long and not too fat)
2 tablespoons pesto (homemade or store bought)
firm mozzarella, cut into 1/4" x 1/2" sticks
prosciutto slices (about 3-4)
coconut oil (or oil saved from frying bacon)
Optional garnishes for appetizers: basil leaves, grape tomato halves, small mozzarella balls

1.  Wash and dry the zucchini.  Cut a thin portion off one side to create a flat surface (so the zucchini will not roll when placed on that side).  Repeat on the opposite side.  Cut the zucchini lengthwise down the center, between the two flat surfaces.  Set the zucchini halves with the seed sides up and, using a spoon, scrape down the center of each zucchini to remove the seeds and create a hollowed out space.

2.  Spread 1 TB of pesto down the center of each zucchini half in the hollow space.  Top pesto with mozzarella sticks just the length of the hollow space (do not let cheese extend beyond this space).  Wrap each zucchini half with the sliced prosciutto, being careful to overlap and encase the filling completely.

Saute prosciutto wrapped zucchini in skillet
3.  Heat the oil in a skillet to medium-high.  Place the zucchini with seam side down into the pan and saute until the prosciutto is browned and crispy.  Turn over and repeat with second side.  You may also wish to brown edges, as well.  Remove from pan and drain briefly on a paper towel.  Cut each zucchini into serving size pieces.  To serve as a side dish, cut each zucchini half into 2 pieces.  If creating appetizers, cut each zucchini into small squares and top with suggested garnish (as pictured) and secure with a toothpick.

Nutritional Information per side dish serving (1/4 recipe): 106 calories, 2.5 g carbohydrate (0.6 g dietary fiber, 1.5 g sugar), 8.4 g total fat (3.3 g saturated fat, 0 g trans fat), 14 mg cholesterol, 381 mg sodium, 115.3 mg calcium, 128 mg potassium, 6.7 g protein.  Net carbs per serving: 1.9 grams

Recipe by Kathryn Sheehan, copyright 2015

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