Zucchini Custard with Vinegar Pearls and Parmesan Crisps

These Zucchini Custards are perfect for summer entertaining. You can make them ahead and serve them at room temperature.

The Parmesan Crisps and Vinegar Pearls make elegant additions but you can also serve them with tomato, basil and a drizzle of balsamic or a sprinkle of parmesan if you want to streamline the recipe.

The recipe makes 6-8 ramekins depending on the size of your ramekins.

You can vary the fresh herbs to your taste.

And…you will want to remember this recipe when you are overwhelmed by the bounty of late summer zucchini!!

Zucchini Custard with Vinegar Pearls

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Course: Appetizer
Cuisine: Italian
Prep Time: 20 mins
Cook Time: 45 mins
Total Time: 1 hr 35 mins
Servings: 8 servings


  • 3 cups zucchini about 2 8" zucchini
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1/4 cup sweet onion minced or shallots
  • 3 Tbsps flour
  • 2/3 cup milk
  • 1 Tbsp chopped basil plus more for garnish
  • 1 tsp oregano chopped
  • 1 tsp rosemary chopped
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp black pepper
  • 1/4 tsp cayenne pepper
  • 2 eggs
  • 2 egg whites
  • 1/2 cup fontina cheese grated or any soft, mild cheese
  • 6 Tbsp grated Parmesan
  • 2 cups grape tomatoes or 16 slices of beef steak tomato
  • Vinegar pearls for garnish or drizzle Balsamic vinegar
  • Parmesan crisps for garnish or sprinkle with fresh parmesan


  • Trim and wash the zucchini but do not peel. Pulse in your food processor to a fairly fine grate. Spread zucchini on a clean towel and sprinkle with salt. Let rest 15-20 minutes while you prepare other parts. Then you will squeeze out as much liquid as possible.
  • Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Take a low flat baking dish big enough to hold your ramekins and fill it up with 1-2 inches of water.
  • Spray a sauce pan with cooking oil. Saute the onions about 5 minutes. Sprinkle the flour over the onions and stir for a couple of minutes. Slowly add the milk. Start with a small amount and moisten the flour. Keep adding milk as it gets absorbed. Stir constantly until the mixture starts to thicken. Remove from heat.
  • Put eggs and whites in the food processor and whisk until well blended. Add the basil, oregano and rosemary. Add the salt and pepper and cayenne. pulse until it is all well blended.
  • Add the milk mixture and pulse to blend well.
  • Add the cheese and pulse to blend in.
  • Add the zucchini and pulse to blend in.
  • Spray your ramekins with cooking spray. Take half the parmesan and sprinkle it evenly in the bottom of each ramekin. Divide the custard mixture evenly among the ramekins and top with the remaining parmesan.
  • Set the ramekins in the baking dish with the water. Bake about 40 minutes and check to see if the center is set. Baking time will depend on the size of your ramekins. Deeper custards may need another 5-10 minutes.
  • Remove ramekins from the oven when the center is no longer jiggly. Remove the ramekins from the water bath using tongs. Allow them to cool to room temperature or just above before serving.
  • You can refrigerate the custards for a day or 2. Bring to room temperature before serving.
  • Arrange custards on a serving plate. Divide halved grape tomatoes and garnishes evenly among the servings. Top with vinegar pearls and parmesan crisps.



Calories: 123kcal | Carbohydrates: 8g | Protein: 9g | Fat: 6g | Saturated Fat: 4g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 0.4g | Monounsaturated Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 71mg | Sodium: 277mg | Potassium: 283mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 4g

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