Zucchini Pudding

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Zucchini PuddingFlan is usually understood to be a South American vanilla-flavored dessert custard. Yet, the world is full of seemingly antithetical tastes that would be surprising to the average eater. Chinese steamed buns filled with sweet red bean paste? Turkish pudding made with finely shredded chicken breast? Tunisian beef stew with cherries and apricots? Here’s one of my favorite adventures in confusing culinaria. Prepare to see flan differently from today forward.

  • Yield: 4 Servings


  • 4 medium zucchini, diced
  • 1 Tbsp extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 tsp salt, divided
  • ½ cup cream
  • 1 Tbsp cornstarch
  • ½ cup Parmesan cheese, grated
  • 1 Tbsp dried oregano
  • ½ tsp ground black pepper
  • 3 eggs
  • 1 Tbsp butter, melted
  • 4 Tbsp (½ stick)
  • butter
  • ¼ cup flour
  • 2½ cups milk
  • 1 tsp salt
  • ½ cup Parmesan cheese, grated
How to Make It
  1. Preheat the oven to 350°F.
  2. In a large mixing bowl, combine the zucchini, olive oil, and ½ teaspoon of salt. Toss the zucchini to coat. Place the zucchini on a sheet pan in a single layer. Transfer the sheet pan to the oven and roast for 30-35 minutes, or until the zucchini is soft and beginning to brown.
  3. Remove the zucchini from the oven and lower the temperature to 300°F. In a blender or food processor, combine the roasted zucchini, cream, cornstarch, Parmesan cheese, oregano, black pepper, and eggs. Purée until smooth. Brush the insides of ramekins with melted butter. Evenly distribute the contents of the blender into the ramekins. Place the ramekins into a larger baking dish or cake pan. Pour an inch of water into the larger pan. Carefully transfer the baking dish into the oven and bake for 40-45 minutes, or until the flan has set.
  4. While the flan is baking, make the Parmesan sauce. Place a skillet over medium heat and add butter. When it melts completely, sprinkle in the flour and whisk to combine smoothly. Continue to whisk the mixture for 2 minutes.
  5. Slowly pour in the milk while continuing to whisk briskly, to ensure the sauce is smooth with no lumps. Whisk in salt and Parmesan cheese. Reduce the heat to low and let the mixture simmer, stirring occasionally, for 8 minutes. Remove the mixture to a large mixing bowl and set aside until the flan is ready.
  6. Remove the flan from the oven and allow to cool for 30 minutes. Top with some of the Parmesan sauce and serve.

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