This week is all about spring and keeping things fresh but to tell this story I need to go back to Christmas.
Ryan's family has this amazing tradition of an Iron Chef inspired cook-off that happens on Christmas eve. It's a sibling cook-off that begins with major smack talk starting around November and culminating in a crazyfun, wine-fueled day in the kitchen.
In short-It's basically amazing. We even get chef's coats.
This recipe comes from the enemy. And by "enemy" I mean "Kristal and Simon (the couple on the right) who are extremely cool cats. They got it at this site and I have totally put my own spin on it.
Wash off 4 small to average-ish sized zucchinis. If you have a mandolin or other normal type of slicer machine machine, use it to slice the zucchinis "paper thin". I usually get closer to "cardboard thin"... but do what you can. I , personally, don't prefer the outside "skins" (because I think they're too bitter) so I take the first two slices per strip out. It's your call though.
Once all of your zucchinis are sliced, add three tablespoons of olive oil and mix it thoroughly to make sure every slice is lightly coated but not slick with oil. (I use my hands for this part.)
Zest one lemon and add it too the zucchini bowl along with the juice from the lemon. Stir it all up again (with a spoon this time) , trying to make sure everything gets evenly coated.
I topped this with a third of a bag of salted/ roasted pistachios, a half a bag of sliced almonds (from the bag that had a whopping 3.5oz), a half a container of feta cheese (approximately .5 oz) , and a few twists of the pepper shaker. Mix all of this around with a third swish.
Here's where I went off script. When I served this to my family a few weeks ago for Easter lunch and they weren't too keen on the "dryness" that came with feta. To combat this (haha- I just used a war term. The roomies are watching Army Wives in the next room) I added a half a small container of grape tomatoes. I think this adds two things:
juicyness and twang.... just a little acid to give it a boost. Add another shake or two of pepper but hold off on the salt. The pistachios add a lot and I hate for it to be salt overload.
Put it in the fridge and let it marinate for a while. To taste best, raw zucchini should really be given the chance to contemplate life (i.e. soak in all the olive oil goodness) for at least an hour (overnight would probably be even better) and served cold.
Try it and let me know how you like it!