Zucchini with Crispy Cheese Crumbs

My diet has become more and more vegetarian over the last year or so. I used to enjoy a big fat burger once in a while, but don't really have a chance to do so anymore, and I lost interest too, I guess. I kind of enjoy the occasional lamb dish, and I'd always go for seafood. But meatwise, we seldomly eat other stuff than chicken and I am getting sick and tired of that as well.
Instead, I'd rather experiment with preparing veggies  in a way that they would become a whole meal. Like these zucchinis. I used to not particularly like them, but oven-roasted with chili flakes and fresh thyme and sprinkled with Parmesan and roasted bread crumbs, it doesn't need much more flavor than that. Have these over some steamed rice, couscous or other grain and you surely have a wholesome and filling vegetarian meal. For the carnivores, these zucchinis will be perfect company for any grilled steak, roast chicken or fish.

(Print Recipe)

400g zucchini (courgettes), trimmed and cut into chunky batons
2 tablespoons olive oil, divided
1 tablespoon fresh thyme leaves
pinch of dried chili flakes
salt and pepper to taste

2 garlic cloves, crushed
1/4 cup dried or stale breadcrumbs
3 tablespoons grated Parmesan cheese

Serves 4 as a side dish
Heat oven to 200C. Place courgettes on a baking sheet or roasting tin. Toss in one tablespoon of olive oil, thyme leaves, chili flakes and seasoning. Bake for about 20 minutes.
Meanwhile, combine 1 tablespoon olive oil, garlic breadcrumbs and Parmesan in a bowl. Sprinkle over the soft courgettes and  bake for another 10 minutes or until crisp. Serve immediately.

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