Two of our three zucchini plants got so sick I had to cut them, but the other one seemed to shape up, maybe afraid of following the neighbors’ fate. Yesterday, as I stared at the pantry considering my options for a quick dinner, it occurred to me to go check our veggie garden. I knew the cherry tomatoes had to be ripe by now, but the two cute zucchinis were a nice added bonus. Let’s hope this is just the beginning of a great harvest! 😉
Veggies fresh from the garden (as well as from farmer’s markets) are so much better than those tired beings at the grocery store, that I like to keep their preparation very simple. One of my favorite quick dishes for zucchini comes from a great blog, Smitten Kitchen. I make it quite often, actually, changing it slightly according to my mood.
Here is yesterday’s version, served as a side dish for barbecued brisket that will definitely show up on Bewitching Kitchen sometime
QUICK ZUCCHINI SAUTE WITH ROASTED PEANUTS
(adapted from Smitten Kitchen, original recipe from Red Cat, New York)
2 small zucchini (preferably from your own garden!)
2 tsp olive oil
salt and pepper to taste
squirt of lemon juice
lemon zest to taste
1/4 cup roasted, salted peanuts
Julienne the zucchini, not too thin (zucchini tends to turn into mush fairly easily). Heat the olive oil in a non-stick pan until you can detect a little smoke forming. Add the zucchini, salt and pepper. Saute until it starts to get light brown in some spots. Lower the heat, add a squirt of fresh lemon juice, some lemon zest, and incorporate the roasted peanuts. Taste for seasoning, adjust if necessary.
My comments: this is a very quick dish to prepare. Zucchini cooks fast and you definitely want to keep some “bite” into it, that is why I advise you not to cut it too thin. I use a Japanese style mandoline with the largest julienne blade, but folks with better knife skills than me would probably find it just as easy to use a knife.
You can vary this dish in countless ways. Most people would start by cooking some onion and garlic, but my goal was to make the zucchini shine in all its glory. Lemon juice is my favorite addition to plenty of dishes, I think it brightens up the flavor in a very nice, clean way.
In case you are wondering about the cherry tomatoes: they were absolutely delicious, with just a little sea salt sprinkled on top, nothing else needed.
Recipe in Portuguese after the photo….
ABOBRINHAS REFOGADAS COM AMENDOINS
2 abobrinhas pequenas
2 colheres de cha’ de azeite de oliva
sal e pimenta
suco de limao
raspas de limao
1/4 xicara de amendoins torrados
Corte as abobrinhas em palitinhos nao muito finos. Aqueca o oleo em uma frigideira tefal ate’ que um pouco de vapor seja visivel. Adicione as abobrinhas cortadas, sal e pimenta do reino. Cozinhe em fogo alto ate’ comecar a tomar uma coloracao dourada. Diminua o fogo e adicione suco e raspas de limao Finalmente, adicione os amendoins, incorpore e sirva.