I am a big fan of any fun foods that taste like my favorite fried foods. But if I can bake them and still enjoy them, why not? It’s alot better for me and I can enjoy a few extrapieces! Seriously, the hardest part of this whole recipe is getting your hands a little dirty while breading the chayote wedges. For those of you unfamiliar with chayotes, it is in the squash family and is also known as the pear squash because it resembles a perfectly green pear. It has a extra crunchy texture and can be served raw or cooked. I am a big fan of chayotes and I like to add them to soups, stews, carne guisada, salads and stir-frys. At the end of the post I have included a few simple ways to enjoy chayote. Paired with my favorite avocado salsa, lovingly known as the “Green Sauce”, this makes a great appetizer. #foodieforlife #chayotes
Chayotes resemble a pear and are known as pear squash, easy enough to remember.
Yields up to 8 servings
For the Tomatillo Avocado Salsa:
1 large avocado
4-6 small tomatillos, chopped
½ small white onion, chopped
1 to 2 serrano chiles, chopped
1/3 cup cilantro, chopped
Juice of 1 large lime
Salt to taste (start with 1 teaspoon)
½ cup water
For the Chayote Wedges:
2 chayote squash, remove pit, and slice into ½-inch wedges
1½ cups flour
2½ to 3 cups panko bread crumbs
2 tablespoons of your favorite hot sauce
1 tablespoon smoked paprika
¼ teaspoon Cayenne pepper
1 teaspoon pepper
1 teaspoon salt
In the blender, combine all of the ingredients to make the tomatillo avocado salsa, blend on high until smooth. Taste for salt, transfer to serving dish and cover with plastic wrap. Make sure you press plastic down, so it is making contact with salsa. This will keep it from turning brown. Chill until ready to use.
Preheat oven to 400ºF and line two baking sheets with parchment paper or easy release foil paper. Spray with Pam cooking spray, and set aside.
Set up your breading station. In a large bowl, combine the flour with smoked paprika, Cayenne pepper, salt and pepper. In the second bowl, combine the eggs with hot sauce, whisk to combine. In the third bowl, add the panko bread crumbs and ½ teaspoon of salt.
Toss the chayote wedges in the flour mixture and toss to coat evenly, shaking excess flour off. Dip a few into the egg mixture, then one at a time, roll in the panko. Place on lined baking sheet. Use both baking sheets so not to overcrowd the wedges. When done, bake for 20 minutes, turn over, spray with more Pam, and bake for another 10 minutes. Serve right away or keep warm in low temperature oven. Serve with tomatillo avocado salsa.
Tips~ If you have some wedges left over, to reheat, place in a skillet sprayed with Pam and heat to medium heat. Cook for a few minutes on each side until crispy and warm.
Grilled Chayote with Lemon Pepper Seasoning. Drizzle with olive oil and season with lemon pepper. Grill for a few minutes per side on preheated grill.
Roasted Chayote with Cilantro Jalapeño Mojo: 1 bunch of cilantro, 2-3 jalapeños, 4 cloves garlic, juice of 2 limes, 1 teaspoon Mexican oregano, 1/2 teaspoon cumin, 1/2 teaspoon pepper, 1/2 cup grapeseed oil and salt to taste. Blend on high until smooth. Pour over 3-4 cubed chayotes in baking dish. Roast in 400 degree F preheated oven for 45 minutes.