About two months from now, I will be offloading zucchinis to anyone who will take them, perhaps swapping them for stone fruit in my local barter group. But right now, I’m enjoying the magic of the first harvest. Of small, emerald green zucchini and flowers like sunshine, drawing in the bees.
I grow zucchini every year – you can read how here. There will be a time for roasting or grilling or steaming them, but at the start of the harvest I love them in a simple salad. Pick or buy your zucchini small and sweet, and shave them into delicate strips. Toss them into a simple salad with nuts, fruit, and other greens of choice. Wild purslane has appeared in the path beside my community garden plot, so I'm using it in my salads as well.
This recipe is for a salad of textures as much as it is of flavours. The burst of bright juice from every pomegranate seed. The cool silk of the zucchini. The subtle herby velvet of the purslane. The nuttiness of the buckwheat. The sweet crunch of almond, and the sharp acidity of the vinaigrette. It’s a true summer salad.
Zucchini, almond and pomegranate salad
Serves 1 as a main or two as a side
1 small zucchinis
Half a pomegranate (or strawberries, pear or tomato)
1 cup of greens (lettuce, baby spinach, bok choy, rocket, foraged greens etc)
½ cup almonds and buckwheat (or other nuts and seeds)
1 tablespoon of pomegranate molasses (or apple cider vinegar or lemon juice)
½ tablespoon of olive oil
Toast your nuts and seeds in a dry frypan over a medium heat, stirring or tossing them for five minutes, then set aside to cool. Using a potato peeler, mandolin or a sharp knife, shave the zucchini into strips. Collect the seeds from your pomegranate (or chop your fruit) and slice your greens. Toss these all together and arrange on a plate. Put the molasses and oil in a small jar, screw on the lid tightly and shake well. Drizzle over the top and serve immediately.