Gayla’s Zucchini Cups With John’s Roasted Red Bell Peppers

Episode: 
Holiday Special

serves 6-8

Ingredients

  • 2 red bell peppers
  • 1/2 cup olive oil
  • 1/2 cup basil leaves
  • 1 to 2 cloves garlic, chopped
  • 2 cups finely chopped crackers
  • 2 1/2 Tablespoons melted butter
  • 7 Tablespoons parmesan cheese
  • 4 cups zucchini or other squash diced about 1/4 inch
  • 1/2 cup diced green onion (about 4) using some green
  • 4 eggs
  • 1/4 cup 1% milk
  • 6 oz. fresh curd cheese (finely chopped) or shredded cheddar cheese
  • 1/2 teaspoon each, salt and pepper
  • 1/4 teaspoon red pepper flakes
  • 4 oz. chevre cheese

Preparation

Using your broiler, cook the bell peppers until they are charred all over by turning them several times. Take the charred peppers and place them in a plastic zip lock bag and let them steam for several minutes. This helps for easy removal of the blackened skins. Cut into strips and lightly marinate with olive oil, chopped fresh garlic, and salt to taste. Thinly slice basil leaves and sprinkle over the top.

Preheat oven to 350°. Grease muffin pans. I like the 1 cup capacity pan, or you can use smaller size, or a 9 X 13” pan.

Mix cracker crumbs with butter and 2 tablespoons parmesan cheese, and press about 1 1/2 tablespoons in bottom of muffin tins.

Whisk eggs in a medium bowl until fluffy. Stir in your cheese choice (fresh curds or cheddar) and 3 tablespoons of parmesan, salt, pepper, red pepper flakes, and the diced zucchini. Spoon into muffin tins about 3/4 inch from the top. Sprinkle with remaining 2 tablespoons of parmesan cheese.

Bake in oven for 35 minutes or just until golden brown around edges. Cool briefly and remove from pan with spatula. Serve upside down with a tablespoon of room temperature chevre cheese and about 3 slices of roasted red pepper and basil leaves. You want your zucchini cups served warm, not really hot. They can be made 2 days ahead and heated for 30 seconds in the microwave with the chevre cheese. Just before serving, top with peppers. They make a great cold snack.

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