Wondering what to do with all those end-of-summer zucchinis? This dish makes a colorful presentation and is really quick and easy to prepare. I like how the blanching takes away any bitterness from the zucchini, and the fresh herbs and veggies get a dollop of richness from crème fraîche. If you are entertaining guests, you can complete the first few steps ahead of time and save the 5 or 10 minutes of baking until after they arrive.
Quick Baked Zucchini with Crème Fraîche, Herbs & Tomatoes
1 large or 2 small zucchinis, ends discarded, and sliced lengthwise into long, thin slices, less than 1/4 inch thick (if the zucchini is really long, you can cut the slices in half to fit in the roasting dish)
1 cup of cherry tomatoes, sliced into discs or diced
1/2 cup fresh parsley, chopped
Handful of fresh basil, chopped
1/2 cup crème fraîche (with or without herbs)
Splash of olive oil
Salt and pepper to taste
Directions: Bring a large pot of water to a boil while you cut the veggies and herbs. When the water is boiling, gently add the zucchini slices and stir; blanch them for 2-3 minutes until slightly softened. Drain and transfer to a colander lined with paper towels to dry.
When ready to bake, preheat the oven to 375 F (190 C). Place the dried, blanched zucchini slices in a roasting dish coated with olive oil; sprinkle with salt & pepper. Spread crème fraîche over the tops and add tomato slices around sides and on top of the zucchini. Sprinkle the herbs on top and bake for 5-10 minutes, or until zucchini is soft in the middle and the crème fraîche is melted and starting to bubble.