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Farm Fresh: Italian Zucchini Pie a savory slice of garden goodness

Thursday, September 02, 1999

Tested by Betsy Kline

Home gardens are groaning right about now with vines heavy with zucchini and other varieties of summer squash. If you just can't face another plate of sautéed zucchini, Mary Tambellini has a delicious alternative: Italian Zucchini Pie.

Easy dishes are Tambellini's forte, just part of her Menu Magic recipe service, some of which have been featured in Countdown to Dinner.

If you have only green zucchini, go ahead and use them, but the mixture of green and yellow is what gives this savory recipe its eye appeal. This can be served as a side dish, but we made it a main dish with a side salad.

Italian Zucchini Pie

1 can refrigerated Pillsbury crescent rolls
2 tablespoons butter
2 cups thinly sliced zucchini, unpeeled
2 cups thinly sliced yellow squash, un-peeled
1 cup finely chopped onion
1 small garlic clove, minced
1/2 cup chopped fresh parsley
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon black pepper
1/4 cup fresh basil, thinly sliced
1 egg, well beaten
8 ounces mozzarella or Swiss cheese, grated (we used mozzarella)

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

Press crescent rolls into 10-inch glass pie plate to make a pie crust. (We laid the dough triangles, points pointing toward the center and wide sides toward the rim, like spokes in a circle with space in between. Then, using our fingers, we patted and molded the sections gently together, making a solid crust. It's easy; the dough is very soft and easy to work with. We used a deep-dish glass pie plate, and the crust came almost to the rim.) Bake the crust for 10 minutes, checking after 5 minutes to see if it is lying smoothly. If it's puffing up, prick with a fork.

While the crust is baking, sauté the zucchini, yellow squash, onion, garlic, herbs and seasonings in the butter, folding in the egg and cheese last. (There's just enough egg to bind the vegetables together; this is not a quiche.)

Pour mixture into crust. Bake uncovered at 350 degrees until the center tests firm, approximately 30 to 40 minutes. Serves 8.

If you have a fruit or vegetable that you would like to see featured between now and Sept. 30, please call food editor Suzanne Martinson at 412-263-1760 or e-mail us ataburnett@post-gazette.com. orbkline@post-gazette.com. We're also looking for easy-to-make, quick recipes that highlight the fabulous flavors of fresh produce. Send to Farm Fresh, PG Food, 34 Blvd. of the Allies, Pittsburgh, PA 15222.

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