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Sunday, July 5, 2009

A Zucchini Salad that Zucchini Haters Will Love

There comes a time every summer when the neighbors with gardens are offering you bags of zucchini. It's a dreaded moment, and you have to make a decision: be honest and turn them down, or accept the cache of zukes and donate half of them to the compost.

Some people have been fed so many zucchini —think muffins, bread, lasagna — in their lives that they won't eat them at all.

We happen to think that they're great as part of a casserole, a cacciatore or stir fried in Asian dishes. We also slice them in half lengthwise and grill them with a generous brushing of balsamic vinaigrette. But even we grow tired of them by summer's end.

Last year, however, Fort Hill Farm, our CSA, gave out a recipe for a zucchini salad that has us once more happily accepting donations. It's a fresh summer salad sparked with mint and lemon, and it's a winner with our friends.

Fresh Zucchini Salad
3 or 4 zucchini, washed and shaved/sliced as thinly as you can (about 1/16 inch)
1/4 cup loosely packed mint, chopped roughly, plus a few sprigs saved for garnish
Juice of 1 lemon
2 T. olive oil
Salt and pepper to taste
About 10 meaty shavings of Parmesan

Put the zukes in a glass or ceramic bowl. Add olive oil and lemon juice, salt and pepper.
Stir to mix. Add chopped mint and all but a couple Parmesan shavings, and stir again.
Either garnish the salad in the bowl, or distribute it among four salad plates, then garnish with extra cheese shavings and sprigs of mint.

(We haven't tried this yet because the summer is young, but we imagine this salad would also be good with lime juice and cilantro instead of the lemon and mint, and perhaps with feta instead of Parmesan.)


  1. that looks great! such a great combination of ingredients. thanks for the recipe.

  2. Such a beautiful, refreshing summer salad!

  3. refreshing and simple-have you try to pickle them?

  4. We have not tried to pickle zucchinis. Can you give us a brief description/explanation?

  5. Looks terrific, will certainly give it a try. A mandolin should do the trick for thinly sliced zuke.

  6. Yes, a mandolin is best, if you have one. For this salad, because we made a half-version, we used a wide vegetable peeler with a fairly big mouth.

  7. Great looking salad! I feel that your blog is great! I just joined....thanks!


  8. This looks perfect for summer! I wish I had friends offering me lots of zucchini from their gardens :)

    Just started reading your blog and love it!

  9. Well, it's always cheap at the farmers market, or even at the supermarket.