I absolutely love the versatility of courgettes, especially in salads. By manipulating their texture and form we can create such different mouth feels and sensations while eating them. There are several ways that I always resort back to preparing this vegetable and this is one of them. Using a speed peeler to shave delicate strips from the vegetable. It is crucial to remove as much moisture/water from these strips before adding any dressing. We do this by massaging salt into them and leave them for about 30 minutes to release this water. The following step is also vital to ensure you do not get soggy fettuccini. You then use a tea towel to squeeze the remaining moisture out of the strips of courgette, resulting in beautifully wide but razor thin strips that are ready to be coated in any dressing you fancy.
This pesto plays on more of a salad dressing than a pasta sauce. I add lemon and red wine vinegar to heighten the tanginess of the dish.
After the noodles are tossed in the dressing I would highly recommend adding sliced cherry tomatoes or even oven roasted tomatoes, I just didn't have any at the time.
Double or triple this recipe for a fantastic salad to share at a summer BBQ.
45 MINUTES. SERVES 2
1 tsp salt
1 tbs sugar
1 tsp salt
1 tbs apple cider vinegar
1 lemon, juiced
2 tbs red wine vinegar
1 clove garlic
100 ml olive oil
1 radish, finely sliced
basil leaves to garnish
Firstly start off by peeling the courgette. Working with one side first peel away strips until you seed the seeds from the core. Shave the courgette the whole way around until you see the core. You should be left in a rectangular shaped core, eat it, its good for you!
Next you want to remove the moisture from the strips of courgette. In a large mixing bowl add the courgette and salt. Use your hands to gentle massage the salt into the strips.
Put the courgette in a colander over the sink and leave for 30 minutes for the moisture to drip through.
Now make the pickled shallot. Finely slice the shallot. Add it to a bowl with the lemon, sugar, salt and vinegar. Mix well and leave to sit for 30 minutes also.
Next make the pesto. Add the basil, parsley, lemon, gherkins, vinegar and garlic clove to a blender. blitz until everything is broken down.
While the blender is running slowly pour in the olive oil, this will emulsify the dressing nicely. Season with salt and pepper and add more olive oil if you think it is too thick.
Come back to the courgette after 30 minutes. Squeeze excess moisture out with your hands. Place the courgette in a tea towel and squeeze one last time removing as much of the water as possible.
Add the courgette to a mixing bowl. Spoon in 2 tbs of the pesto and mix well.
To plate add the courgette strips to a bowl. Sprinkle over the pickled shallot and sliced radish.
Drizzle over some more dressing and finish with some basil leaves and hemp seeds if you have them