Beat the Heat: Part Zillion!
Zucchini Basil Salad

Fresh back from a cross-country road trip through 4 national parks, three rolls of campfire-cooked Pillsbury products, and too many kinds of 80+-degree weather, I give you…

Cold Zucchini Basil Salad
A variation from simply real health I googled after a random Instagram find.

Ingredients:
1 large heirloom tomato, sliced into bite-sized pieces
3-4 zucchini total (prefer a mix of green and yellow summer squash)
1/4 c goat cheese
A handful of basil, rolled and chopped into ribbons
olive oil (the highest quality you have on hand)
Salt & pepper, to taste
1 fresh lemon
1/4 c slivered almonds

Steps:
1. With a vegetable peeler, thinly scrape the zucchini and summer squash into long ribbon slices, tossing the seedy core, or saving it for a Sunday frittata mix.
2. Add the ribbons to a bowl, season with sea salt* and pepper*, basil, drizzle with olive oil* per preference. [*NOTE: if you want salad for later, pack the zucchini separate from the olive oil, salt, pepper and lemon juice to keep the crunch, and combine just before eating]. Toss to mix.

Ribboned zucchini with salt 'n' pepper.
Ribboned zucchini with salt ‘n’ pepper.

3. Briefly toast almond slices.
4. Grate lemon for as much rind as you can get before you get to the pith.
5. Add cheese, tomato, lemon rind and almonds to zucchini. Season with more pepper.
6. Squeeze 1/2 lemon* over the top for juice. Toss gently.
7. If you have time, let the salad settle in the fridge before serving, no more than 2 hours’.

Voila! Nom nom nom.
Voila! Nom nom nom.

Novelty Rating: 4 of 5
a great minimal-heat-generating option for the heat!
Likelihood of Repeat: 80%
Lesson Learned: the original recipe said to leave it an hour or even overnight, but I would say my next-day leftovers were missing the bright lemon flavors and the delightfully fresh al dente crunch of the zucchini from the first day. I plan to make this again some day soon, but I’ll have to remember to allot some time to slicing the zucchini ribbons, which I always forget to consider.

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