Grilled Zucchini and Hazelnut Salad
Author: New School of Cooking
- ⅓ cup shelled hazelnuts or walnuts
- 7 small zucchini or 3 large
- 4 tbsp extra-virgin olive oil
- Sea salt and black pepper
- 1 tsp balsamic vinegar
- 1¼ cups mixed green and purple basil leaves (I usually just use green)
- 3 oz top-quality parmesan, broken up or very thinly sliced
- 2 tsp hazelnut oil (optional)
- Wash zucchini and rinse basil.
- Preheat oven to 300.
- Scatter the hazelnuts over a baking sheet and roast for 12-15 minutes, or until nicely browned.
- Let them cool down before rubbing them between your hands to remove most of the skins (some should remain).
- Chop the hazelnuts roughly.
- Place a ridged griddle pan on high heat and leave it there until it’s almost red-hot–at least 5 minutes or use a standard grill.
- Meanwhile, trim the ends of the zucchini and cut them on an angle into ⅜-inch-thick-slices.
- Place them in a bowl and toss with half the olive oil and some salt and pepper.
- Place the slices on the hot grill pan or grill and char-grill for about 2 minutes on each side; turn them over using tongs. You want to get distinct char marks.
- Transfer to a mixing bowl, pour over the balsamic vinegar, toss together and set aside.
- Once the zucchini have cooled down, add the remaining olive oil, the basil and hazelnuts.
- Mix lightly, then taste and adjust the seasoning accordingly.
- Transfer the salad to a flat plate, incorporating the Parmesan, and drizzle the hazelnut oil over the dish for a finishing touch (parm not shown below, but trust me–it makes the dish).
I love this side dish anytime of the year!