Recipe: Zucchini w/ Pine Nuts, Basil, and Mint

Hello loves! Back with a second veggie based recipe. I was served this dish at a friend’s house, and knew I had to recreate it. I googled the basics of what I had eaten, and found that what my friend served me was interpreted from a recipe posted on Alexandra’s Kitchen, a gorgeous food blog filled with lots of hearty, veggie-filled dishes. I’m a massive fan of roasted vegetables, but my second favorite way to prepare them is with a nice sauté and some herbs. Check out Alexandra’s recipe, or follow mine down below for a few tweaks that really brought this to life even more, in my opinion.

The Ingredients

  • 3 Medium Zucchinis/2 Large
  • 1/2 cup Basil, Chopped
  • 1/3 Cup Mint, Chopped
  • 2-3 Tbsp Capers, Drained, to Taste
  • 1/4 Cup Pine Nuts, Toasted for extra flavor
  • EVOO Spray (because sprays use less oil, which means less added calories/fats)
  • 2 Cloves Black Garlic/Regular Garlic if You Cannot Find Black
  • Anchovy Filets/Paste (optional), to taste
  • 1/4 Cup Sherry Vinegar/Dry White Wine
  • Pecorino Romano (optional) for topping
  • Salt, Pepper, Red Pepper Flakes

Preparations

  • Dry toast the pine nuts in whatever pan you will be cooking the dish in, I recommend cast iron, don’t wipe oils from nuts
  • Drain Capers and set aside
  • Remove skin from garlic, chop if using regular garlic, set aside
  • Chop zucchini into rounds, half the rounds if you like
  • Chop mint and basil into fine flakes, set aside

Cooking

  1. Preheat your cast iron pan for 3 minutes on medium heat.
  2. Spray EVOO spray in small bursts until an even layer is formed. Use as little as needed.
  3. Throw in garlic and sauté until fragrant and golden if using regular.
  4. Add anchovy and quickly brown
  5. Add zucchini, spray a tad more oil if necessary. Sauté until semi-soft. 5-7 minutes. Add salt, pepper, and red pepper flakes to taste.
  6. Pour in sherry or white wine. Scrape fond (brown stuff on the bottom of pan) off while sherry/wine reduces.
  7. Wait until liquid is almost fully reduced, add in herbs and let the final steam from the liquid bloom the oils in the mint and basil into the dish.
  8. Add in pine nuts and capers, taste for salt/pepper/red pepper flakes and adjust if needed.
  9. Press zucchini flat into pan in an even layer, crank the heat up and get a nice brown crisp on the bottom layer. Pay close attention as to not burn the dish.
  10. Add Pecorino on top and enjoy!

This dish can be served as a side or a main course. I enjoyed mine as a main dish for dinner the other night, and was really satisfied. I ate it as a side to my lunch the next day, which was a piece of greek style chicken breast.

Let me know how you like this and go check out Alexandra’s website!

 

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