I know. Some of you grammarians might be cringing to see “Pasta” in quotation marks because far too many people use quotation marks when they are not necessary. Trust me here. In this salad, there is no traditional semolina pasta; the zucchini itself is the pasta. Quotation marks work. You know what else works? This salad. I could eat it everyday.
I had seen recipes for zucchini “pasta” on a few food blogs, but I never tried the recipes because I didn’t have a vegetable spiralizer or fancy tool to cut the zucchini into pasta-like shapes. In lieu of special equipment, this Whole Living recipe implements a little time and elbow grease to carefully slice the zucchini into pasta-like strips. While the hand-cut method works well for small batches of the salad, I would want a quicker, more-efficient method if I were making it for a larger group.
Tomato and Zucchini “Pasta” Salad is a delicious and creative way to prepare zucchini and doesn’t even require turning on the stove or grill. Simply cut strips of raw zucchini and dress with fruity extra virgin olive oil, ripe tomatoes, walnuts, garlic and basil. The salad could be a light lunch all on its own or a side for just about any grilled summer dinner. Make sure you use really ripe and flavorful tomatoes; the salad will only be as good as the ingredients you put in it.
Recipe from Whole Living magazine (Aug 2011, p 101)
Serves 2 generously (can easily be doubled)
8 oz. tomatoes, seeded and diced
1 clove garlic, thinly sliced
¼ cup chopped raw walnuts
2 Tablespoons torn fresh basil, plus leaves for garnish
2 Tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, plus more for drizzling
1 zucchini, thinly sliced lengthwise into pasta-like strips
Make the Tomato and Zucchini “Pasta” Salad
In a bowl, combine the tomatoes, garlic, walnuts, basil and olive oil. Season with salt and let stand 20 minutes. Toss with zucchini and garnish with basil. Serve.