Photograph copyright Andrea Sperling  

It's the end of summer and everyone's pushing zucchini recipes, so why should I be any different? A friend gave me several a few days ago and they've been sitting on the counter waiting to be used. I usually make curried zucchini soup with them, and I'm sure I'll get to that in a few weeks. But in the meantime, I thought I'd play around with the zucchini and make zucchini ribbons.



I like both raw and cooked versions of the ribbons. Cooked zucchini ribbons make a great gluten-free substitute for pasta. You can take the same ingredients in the recipe below and briefly cook them. Start by sauteing the shallots in the olive oil,  add the radishes, then add the zucchini. Cook the zucchini for a minute or two. Don't overcook or you won't want to eat it.  Trust me. Then season with salt, pepper and toss in the arugula, nuts and cheese while it's still warm.   Here's the end-of-summer raw version.

If you can't find the watermelon or bordeaux radishes, use regular radishes. Shave the parmesan cheese on the same vegetable peeler you used for the zucchini.



2 medium zucchini

1 shallot, finely diced

1 1/2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice, plus more if needed

1 teaspoon sherry vinegar or white wine vinegar

2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil

Sea salt

1 cup arugula, washed

1/3 cup toasted walnuts

1 small watermelon or bordeaux radish, very thinly sliced

Shaved parmesan cheese, to tast

 2 tablespoons basil chiffonade (about 6 leaves)


Using a vegetable peeler, peel the zucchini into ribbons, turning the zucchini along the way. Stop when you get to the seeds. Set aside.     

In a small bowl, stir together the shallot, the lemon juice, the vinegar and a pinch of salt.  Whisk in the olive oil to make a vinaigrette.

In a large bowl, combine the zucchini, arugula and radish. Stir the vinaigrette and drizzle over the salad. Toss gently and season with salt and more lemon juice, if needed.

Transfer the salad to individual plates. Sprinkle with the toasted walnuts, basil, and parmesan cheese shavings and serve.