Hungry Haley

it's more than food

Crispy Baked Zucchini Fries (Vegan, GF, Paleo)

Appetizer, VeganHaley HansenComment

Not the least bit fried, but still the crispiest "fried" zucchini! This baked version of a classic is healthier AND easier - made with almond flour and simple spices. These Crispy Baked Zucchini Fries can be served as a party appetizer, mid-day snack, or delicious side to a dinner entree. 

Career change: done. Well, I should say "decided", because "done" would mean I'm also done with school and the actual adult-ing process of obtaining a career. 

In fact, I still haven't God's clear picture of what He wants my career to be. All I know is that I've decided to steer in a direction different from where I was previously going. My next step is discovering down which path I want to head in that new direction. 

Crispy Baked Zucchini Fries (Vegan, GF, Paleo)

This kind of reminds me of making a decision at a restaurant...

  • assess my current condition: how hungry am I? 
  • assess the restaurant's options: what's on the menu? 
  • tune into my body's cues of what sounds good: this usually means waiting for my mouth to water at the thought of any particular menu item. I think it works pretty dang well. 
  • and finally, narrow down my choices to one (maybe two) items and go from there. 

I've already completed steps one and two: I know that I'm not hungry for all that an RD credential requires. I know that the menu of my career offers pllllllllenty of alternate options. Now, step three: what, of this "alternate career" portion on the menu sounds appetizing? Holistic nutritionist? Ehh, probably means more school. Nutrition teacher? We'll see how much patience I have for teaching the same thing over and over. Farmer? Maybe... probably not. Full-time blogger? Too much time on scrolling through social media and trying to figure out how to convince Google to show me off to readers. 

Cafe owner? Picture this: lattes of all milks decorated with art of all shapes and sizes, fresh-baked scones and muffins and turnovers and pop-tarts (Dad's favorites), breakfast burritos and loaded sandwiches and veggie-loaded salads prepared with only local ingredients, and smiles and laughter practically R.O.F.L.-ing out the door as community members and visitors form lines out the door (okay maybe I'm getting ahead of myself there).

Ooooh, now my mouth is watering. 

Okay, but how does one go about a situation in which the menu item sounds appealing beyond belief, yet larger than what he/she can put down in one sitting? Sure, take some of it home is always an option, but I've never been good with that - give me a task and I'll go all in 'til it's all done. Oh, maybe I can split this dish with someone else? Who wants to open a cafe with me? How stinkin' cute would my future husband and I be, working side-by-side to make this local, family-owned and -run cafe the community's go-to for fresh, local, satisfying food they can always count on?

Crispy Baked Zucchini Fries (Vegan, GF, Paleo)

Dear future husband, come out come out wherever you are! I'm in need of a business partner to make this thing seem real and achievable - I know n o t h i n g about opening a restaurant. 

In the meantime, I can start by rough-drafting a menu, right? Menu item #1: these baked zucchini fries. I'm feeling accomplished already, and my appetite is certainly liking this idea for a career :)

Makes about 2 servings

1/3 cup almond meal
1 tsp. garlic powder
1 tsp. nutritional yeast
1/2 tsp. cayenne
1 tsp sea salt
2 flax eggs
1 large zucchini
Your favorite dip, for serving (I used this mayo)

  1. Preheat oven to 425F and line a baking sheet with parchment paper. 
  2. Chop the zucchini in half, and then slice lengthwise as pictured above, doing your best to avoid the center (high water content). 
  3. Prepare the flax eggs in a small flat bowl and combine the dry ingredients in another bowl. Lay the zucchini strips, one at a time, into the flax eggs and roll them around to coat. Then, into the almond meal mixture, rolling again to coat.
  4. Transfer to the baking sheet and bake for 30 minutes, flipping halfway through. Remove from oven when they are golden brown and firm. Set aside to cool slightly before serving (with your favorite dip, if desired). 
  5. Enjoy! 
Crispy Baked Zucchini Fries (Vegan, GF, Paleo)