Zucchini, or courgette as they call it in the United Kingdom, can be found in most super markets year round but their peak season is early to late summer. Over the last few weeks I have been getting tons of zucchini in my veg delivery box so I have come up with several new recipes to make use of my supply. This was the first one good enough to share, it also happened to be the simplest!
Whether you are grabbing zucchini from your garden or local market, choose zucchini with bright-colored, blemish free skin. They store well in the refrigerator for 5-7 days, especially if kept in a plastic bag.
The flavor combinations of this simple salad are phenomenal, so much so that dressing is not even needed. The diverse colors of the salad also mean there are plenty of health-promoting nutrients. Zucchini in particular is a good source of vitamin A and vitamin C. This salad is also low in calories, high in protein, and provides a good dose of fiber. Quick, delicious, and nutritious!
Zucchini, Sun-Dried Tomato, & White Bean Salad
Makes 4 servings (serving size: about 1 cup)
1 tablespoon olive oil
2 medium zucchini, trimmed, quartered lengthwise, and sliced on the diagonal
1 (15-ounce) can cannellini beans, rinsed and drained, or 1.5 cups cooked white beans
1/2 cup chopped sun-dried tomatoes
1/2 lemon, juiced and zested
2 tablespoons chopped fresh basil
sea salt and pepper to taste
Heat oil in a skillet over medium heat. Add chopped zucchini and cook, stirring occasionally, for 5 minutes, or until slightly cooked. Be careful not to overcook the zucchini and turn them mushy.
In a large bowl, toss cooked zucchini with beans, sun-dried tomatoes, lemon juice, lemon zest, and basil. Season with salt and pepper to taste and serve.
Recipe Note: I used cannelini beans in this recipe but feel free to use any type of white beans you have on hand. If you are using sun-dried tomatoes from a can, make sure to rinse and drain them before chopping. I like to use the sun-dried tomatoes found in a pouch that need to be soaked for 30 minutes before using. They tend to be lower in calories and fat since they have not been soaking in oil.
Nutrition facts per serving (serving size: about 1 cup): 170 calories, 6 g total fat, 233 mg sodium, 19 g total carbohydrates, 7 g fiber, 6 g protein
BALANCE IT OUT: This dish makes a nutritious side dish, appetizer, meal or snack. Enjoy it as a meal by stuffing into pita pockets or rolling in a wrap and serving with fruit. Or serve 1-2 servings over a bed of lettuce with some whole grain crackers. As a snack try eating it as is or using it as sort of a dip for some whole grain pita chips or crackers. I also made my own version of lettuce wraps by placing a few spoonfuls of the salad into a large lettuce leaf and wrapping it up. Really the possibilities are endless…
“Everything should be made as simple as possible, but not simpler.” – Einstein