This beautiful, fresh, summer zucchini salad really showcases this season’s produce. I developed it as my garden has exploded with zucchinis, but seeing as zucchini is one of my kids least favourite vegetables, I had to think outside the square to make the most of my abundant supply. They dislike zucchini so much they have nick-named it ‘spew-chini,’ so I’ve had to work really hard to bring them around.
Zucchini has such a mild flavour, I really don’t get why they fuss over it – I think they main objection is if it is overcooked and sloppy. Because it hides well behind other flavours, over the past few months I’ve been giving most meals a veggie ‘boost’ with zucchini – they either haven’t noticed or haven’t complained. They are also happy to eat a simple zucchini soup (blended) and also really like this delicious salad (big cheer). They moaned at first when I served it, but they tried it and conceded that it was good. My son now requests it (though my daughter is less inclined to give me a ‘zucchinis okay’ victory); with great joy, I can declare that the whole family loves this flavoursome salad.
This is just another example of if they don’t like it one way – then try it another. I very rarely concede that any whole food is permanently ‘yuk’ with my kids. I’m tenacious and one way or another I always find a way for them to like foods that nourish them.
Zucchini is a high fibre, nutrient dense vegetable. Studies suggest some of the Phyto (plant) chemicals found in zucchini are beneficial to benign enlargement of the prostate. Basil is a rich source of many essential vitamins, minerals and antioxidant flavonoids, two of which have been shown to protect cells and DNA from radiation. Parsley is a detoxifying, iron-rich herb and the almonds lend some good fats and a little protein.
Take a look at the variations (below the main recipe) for suggestions to alter the recipe to suit many specific dietary requirements.
For lots more sides and salad inspo, take a look at my hugely popular ebook ˜Well Nourished Sides and Salads’– where vegetables become the hero of the dish! It’s great value at just $9.95, click HERE to take a look.
Summer Zucchini Salad
- 4 small zucchini
- 1 tsp sea salt
- 4-5 radish -sliced
- 1 handful fresh basil leaves -torn or finely chopped
- 1 handful fresh parsley leaves -finely chopped
- 40 g parmesan cheese (¼ cup) shaved
- 25 g flaked almonds (¼ cup) toasted
- ½ lemon -juice and zest
- 3 tbsp olive oil -extra virgin
- Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper -to taste
- Using a vegetable peeler or mandolin, shave the zucchini into ribbons and toss in the sea salt. Set aside for 10-15 minutes (whilst you chop/prepare the rest of the ingredients).
- For the dressing, place all of the ingredients in a small jar and shake to combine.
- Rinse your zucchini well and drain in a sieve.
- Toss the zucchini with the radish, basil, parsley and dressing. Arrange on a serving plate or bowl.
- Top with the shaved parmesan and almonds and serve immediately.
- With grilled tempeh, fish, chicken or meat.