This is the zucchini overload time of year. Here is one really fun way to preserve them: zucchini chips.
They were surprisingly good. Like a chip? Not especially. But still good. In fact, I made all of my family try them and they went over quite well.
This recipe uses a dehydrator. I own an Excalibur (from Cultures for Heath). But I share below some tips for using your oven too. There are recipes for a more authentic zucchini “chip” that are fried or baked. For example, you could use home rendered lard and fry it using this recipe as a guide. Or you could just bake them with a coating of bread crumbs and herbs. But if you have a dehydrator, it’s a very simple way to make them. And if you like some of your food to be “live” (enzymes intact) this is a fun recipe.
I used the basic recipe linked to above, but I ended up having so many of my own tips, I am rewriting the recipe with my own thoughts included.
- 2 zucchini (medium small)
1-2 teaspoon extra virgin olive oil or melted coconut oil
1/4-1/2 teaspoon of garlic powder
Freshly Ground Pepper
1) First you need to thinly slice your zucchini. A mandolin would be best for this job. But I don’t own one. I used my food processor and tried to press very lightly down on the zucchini for thin slices. It worked well, though not as even as I had hoped, and a bit thicker too. But that ended up being just fine. Though it would take longer, you could also use a knife and cutting board the old fashioned way.
2) Add the slices to a small bowl and add the oil, a nice sprinkle of salt, garlic powder and a turn of freshly ground pepper. Do note that your zucchini will shrink dramatically. This also means that all seasonings will become much stronger in your finished product, so go easy on the seasoning.
3) Spread out evenly on the dehydrator trays and dehydrate until crisp and dry on 125F (about 4 hours for me).
More Tips and Ideas
1. You can use the lowest setting on your oven. It will take a shorter amount of time, so check every 1/2 hour or so. At 175 degrees, you can expect them to be done in roughly two hours
2. Play around with the seasonings. Spice it up with chili powder. Use fresh garlic instead of garlic powder. Sprinkle with lemon juice or vinegar for some tang.
3. These do become more chewy as they cool down. Make sure you store them in an airtight container.
4. For children you may want to leave out the pepper, as it can make it a bit spicy.
5. This makes about 1 cup of chips, so I recommend after you’ve tried it and if you like it, doing many batches at a time.