Marinara Sauce - warmed( https://www.nospoonnecessary.com/marinara-sauce/ ) or your favorite jarred variety
Salt and Pepper – to taste
Pinch Crushed Red Pepper Flakes
Extra Virgin Olive Oil – as needed
Slice Zucchini into coins, about ¼’’ thick. Place coins in a colander inserted into a bowl large enough to hold colander (to catch the water that will be released from the zucchini. This step is important to ensure the zucchini gets crisp in the oven and doesn’t turn to mush.) Generously season zucchini with salt and toss gently. Cover with plastic wrap and place in the refrigerator for at least 1 hour and up to overnight. Pat zucchini dry with a kitchen or paper towel.
Place Garlic, Parmesan, and Basil leaves in the bowl of a food processor. Pulse for about 30 seconds. Add Panko Breadcrumbs, season with salt, pepper, and a pinch of crushed red pepper flakes. Pulse an additional 3-4 times to incorporate; transfer to a shallow bowl. (If you don’t own a food processor, or simply don’t want another bowl to clean, mince the garlic and basil VERY finely).
Place Flour in a separate shallow bowl and season generously with salt and pepper
Place Egg Whites in another shallow bowl and beat slightly with a fork to aerate.
Start the breading process:
Dredge the zucchini slices in Flour. Shake off excess.
Dip into the Egg Whites, using your hands or a fork to flip over to fully coat.
Drop zucchini into panko mixture and press to adhere crumbs to zucchini.
Transfer to sheet of parchment paper
Repeat until all the zucchini is coated.
Place in the refrigerator for at least 30 minutes (I let mine sit overnight) to allow the coating to fully adhere to the zucchini (this is not absolutely necessary, but it is highly recommended).
Preheat your oven to 425 degrees F. Remove breaded zucchini from refrigerator and place on counter to remove chill while oven is preheating.
Insert a wire cooling rack into a full sheet pan; sprayed very liberally with cooking spray. Transfer Zucchini slices to rack.
Drizzle the zucchini very lightly with olive oil (alternatively you can use PAM spray).
Bake for 15 - 18 minutes, until crisp in texture and golden in color on the top. Remove pan from oven, flip Zucchini over (gently, if you did not spray the grates of the rack generously, you will need to do this very delicately. DO NOT rip them away from grates…. Finesse them gently… be patient. It is not their fault you did not adequately oil the grates… don’t punish them for your mistake!) Likewise, DO NOT overcook these, they are going to go back in the oven for a few minutes after assembling the Napoleon Stacks.
Cook an additional 15-18 minutes, until cooked through and lightly golden in color. Set aside to rest for at least 5 minutes.
While Zucchini is resting; drop oven temperature to 350 degrees F.
Place a piece of parchment on a new (not hot) baking sheet… Start assembling Zucchini Napoleon Stacks:
Spread 1/3 of the largest breaded and baked zucchini coin slices on the parchment, evenly spacing them.
Top each with 1 tsp ricotta cheese.
Add a touch of chopped basil.
Drizzle with 1 tsp marinara.
Top all that with a slice of mozzarella.
Repeat exact steps once more. (creating a stack of two)
Top the stack with another breaded zucchini coin.
Rip a SMALL (¼’’ x ¼’’) piece of mozzarella from your squares (optional). Place in center of stack. Put a long tooth pick (sandwich length) through center of zucchini stack to help stack stay in place.
Bake about 10 minutes, until cheese is melted.
Remove Toothpicks. Garnish with chopped bassil and marinara.
*Notes: You can certainly reheat these; I recommend doing so in an oven, preheated to 325 degrees, for 7-10 minutes.