Zesty pan fried courgettes make a super simple, quick and delicious side dish to accompany lots of dishes. This versatile veg is given a tangy twist in this recipe making them the perfect way to add some extra greens to your meals!
Courgettes are quite possibly up there with broccoli as one of my favourite vegetable sides. But I think you can be put off from cooking or trying them if you have ever experienced the overcooked, soggy version.
Courgettes have a very high water content which when overcooked the water will seep out. This results in a rather limp and soggy vegetable which let’s face it no one wants on their plate.
However, if you follow my method of cooking with the addition of a few cupboard staples I am sure you will change your mind about serving this wonderful vegetable perhaps a little more often.
The Fabulous Courgette
Courgettes are a summer squash, that are tender and very easy to cook. They are packed full of nutrients and minerals, but most notable is that they are a great source of vitamin A.
Most of their goodness is in their skin though, so don’t peel them!
Courgettes really are an incredibly versatile vegetable that are inexpensive to buy and really make a great ingredient. You can sauté, roast, grill or barbecue courgettes and even add them to cakes for a sweet treat.
Oh and they are also known as Zucchini!
Can I eat Courgettes Raw?
Yes you can!
Raw courgettes are wonderful eaten raw. You can spiralise or even shave them into ribbons as a great side dish. You can then add a dressing and voila you have an amazing summer salad like my Spiralised Summer Courgette Salad
Raw courgettes will offer a slightly different nutritional profile than cooked, as they have a little less vitamin A but more vitamin C.
The best way to store courgettes
- Store Courgettes in the fridge
- The fridge is the best place to store courgettes.
- If they didn’t come with any packaging then pop a paper bag around them to protect the delicate outer layer
The BEST way to prepare and cook courgettes – Top Tips
Courgettes should never be overcooked as I mentioned above. Therefore they require a quick burst of high heat to char the outside and gently warm the insides
Try not to overcrowd your frying pan so make sure it is large enough to accommodate the amount you have to cook.
I find slicing the courgettes into rounds also allows the cooking process to be shortened therefore resulting in a crispier courgette.
The thickness you slice the courgettes will also impact your cooking time. If they are sliced very thinly then just flash fry them, but if they are cut a bit thicker then they will need a couple of minutes longer.
I recently bought a Stainless Steel Crinkle Cutter from Amazon, which has been a brilliant little kitchen tool. By using a crinkle cutter on the courgettes it creates ridges on the flesh which char beautifully as you sautee them. Also, I think it makes the courgettes look more tempting!
What you will need for Zesty pan fried courgettes
- Full of essential vitamins and minerals
- In particular, they are a great source of Vitamin A
- In their raw state however they have slightly less vitamin A than when cooked
- A variety of onion
- I like to use chopped frozen shallots
- If you can’t get shallots then use a small onion instead
- I always have a packet of chopped garlic in the freezer as I can’t always be bothered to crush or chop a fresh clove
- You can of course use fresh
- Adds a garlicky earthiness to the vegetables
- Adds an extra zing and freshness
- Also gives another kick of vitamin C
- Salt and Pepper
- Essential seasoning
Cooking pan fried courgettes
These courgettes are super quick to prepare and super easy to cook.
Simply heat a little olive or rapeseed oil in a frying pan and add the chopped shallots and garlic. Fry until slightly softened and slightly brown. Now add the sliced courgettes and on a high heat fry for another couple of minutes until they are starting to char but not going translucent. Remove the pan from the heat, and season really well with lots of salt and pepper.
Finally, stir through the lemon juice and zest and serve immediately.
Serving suggestions for Zesty pan fried courgettes
Sauteed courgettes are a great side for pretty much any meal. As they have such a neutral flavour they tend to simply absorb the flavours of the other components of your meal.
They really are a great veg to use for bulking out a dish and as well as an easy way to add extra greens onto your plate.
Why not try these delicious sauteed courgettes with a big dollop of my easy and quick 15 MINUTE GNOCCHI WITH SUPER GREEN PESTO. It is unbelievably good and perfect when you need a delicious meal in a hurry.
Why not try these other tasty side dishes:
If you loved this recipe, then take a look at these other tasty side dishes and make your vegetables shine!
A totally carb-count-free side dish!