You know what it’s like in the summer — friends and neighbors looking to unload whatever bumper crops they have (and why is it never tomatoes?). One of the Accidental Locavore’s neighbors dropped off a bunch of cucumbers and a nice looking zucchini the other day and I thought it was time to pull out Deborah Madison’s beautiful Vegetable Literacy and put it to use. This comes together quickly and is adapted from her book:
- 1 pound zucchini, cut into 1/2″ coins
- 3 tablespoons olive oil
- 2 medium cloves garlic, peeled and chopped
- 10 mint leaves, chopped
- 5 basil leaves, chopped
- 1 heaping tablespoon capers, rinsed and chopped
- 2 tablespoons pine nuts
- 2 teaspoons wine vinegar
- Salt and pepper
- Mint and basil leaves, slivered for garnish
Heat the oil in a medium sauté pan over medium-high heat. When the oil is hot, add the zucchini and sauté, flipping it, until both sides are golden brown, about 15 minutes. Mix the chopped garlic, mint, basil and capers together. Toast the pine nuts and set aside.
When the zucchini is cooked, remove from the heat, add the herb-garlic mix and the red wine vinegar and toss until everything is well combined. Taste and season with salt and pepper. Finish with the pine nuts and slivered herbs, serve and enjoy!
My verdict: With garlic, mint, pine nuts and capers, what’s not to like? This was easy and delicious. The only problem? It doesn’t use enough zucchini! You could probably add some coarsely chopped black olives and/or sprinkle a little feta cheese on top. Melting a couple of anchovies in the oil before you add the zucchini could also give it that Mediterranean punch, and if your zucchini “coins” weren’t too large, tossing the whole thing into some linguini would give you a great meatless dinner!