Sunday, September 9, 2012

Something Light- Fresh Zucchini Carpaccio

In my new home city it has been HOT. (yes. all caps are warranted. I think it would also be safe to use them for HUMID).

Given the whole hot summer in the city thing we have going on here, I have been on the lookout for cool fresh recipes. (I tried to make a veggie pizza and after trying to check on it and pull it out, was basically too melted to even want to eat it).

So, I saw a recipe on Pinterest for "Raw Zucchini Carpaccio".  Then, I googled it, and it turns out there  are tons of recipes out there from the likes of Tyler Florence, Food & Wine,  EpicuriousSmitten Kitchen, etc etc. So, this is mine!

The stuff:
- 2 fresh raw zucchini (you want big, but not TOO big because you don't want too many seeds)
- 3 cloves garlic
- juice of 1 lemon
- 2-3 tsp olive oil
- salt and pepper
- grated parmesan cheese (don't use the powdery kind. also, if you want this to be vegan, this is optional, you just might want a tiny tad more salt)
- walnuts, chopped and toasted

What to do with it:
Now, the most critical thing here is to cut the zucchini as thin as you possibly can. To do this, I used a mandolin (mine is from Oxo because I have issues with my hands and I love all their good grips stuff).
(this is not my mandolin. this is a glamour shot of someone else's mandolin)

Now, the mandolin and I have a complex relationship that involves a lot of me staring at it with a perplexed look on my face and then swearing at it like a sailor. Usually I can get it working, but it takes a lot of tries in which I do my best and nothing comes out the other side. ANYWAYS. I think this is the way to go- what you really don't want here are slabs of zucchini. If you're patient enough to slice it very thinly by hand, then by all means do that. 

I also sliced the garlic using the mandolin (putting my poor little fingers at risk). Now, normally I'm a huge fan of the chopped garlic in the jar, but I think for something with so few ingredients it is very important to use fresh stuff.

Now, just slice the zucchini, toss with the garlic, cheese, and cooled toasted walnuts, and then dress with the lemon juice, olive oil, salt and pepper. Then, let it sit for about an hour in the fridge to marinate. Then, eat!

This would be really great for a salad course or appetizer, or as a side dish for something grilled. I actually just increased the amount of walnuts and ate it by itself as my dinner. It was light and refreshing and delicious!

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