Sunday, April 25, 2010
Mushroom and Zucchini Salad
Around this time we have become a little tired of comfort food , albeit homemade mac and cheese, soups stews - you get the picture . You look at the calandar , you look outside and realise that regardless of what mother nature throws our way - it time to shed the blankets and think spring like recipes and lighter fare . I took the brave step of planting some lovely spring flowers in planters - to remind us that it is indeed nearly the end of April , and regardless of the weather they are standing tall . Note to all - the picture with the CD/Disc flower is courtesy of my little little gourmet's school art project and in fact she also took the flower pictures .
This salad marries well with beef - I would not exclude making it for chicken , pork or fish - but for some reason I always feel it just goes better with good ole beef . For the vegetarians and or raw foodies , this will also taste great on a bed of spring greens . The beauty of this salad is that it does not need last minute preparation and loves to sit around for at least a hour before been eaten . I would not recommend you leave it longer than that or the lemon juice will soften up the salad too much. So if you are invited to a picnic in the park - or a bbq in the country make this salad and allow it mature to perfection as you drive to your destination .
Any week now in different parts of the nation Farmers Markets will begin to surface and I am sure they will have wonderful fresh produce to enjoy - too early for zucchini - but I am sure the mushrooms will be molto fresca!!! .
Enjoy the recipe and I hope you all enjoy this first ode to spring fare .
Mushroom and Zucchini Salad
a GG original recipe
1 packet white button mushrooms or loose white mushrooms
1-2 small zucchinis
3 spring onions
1/2 bunch italian flat leaf parsley
1 large very juicy lemon
extra virgin olive oil
freshly ground pepper
Clean the mushrooms with a damp paper towel, and slice into quarter inch slices. Wash and dry your zucchini then slice about the same thickness as the mushrooms- either at an angle or round discs.
The juice of a large lemon or two, if they are not very juicy, some olive oil to balance the tartness of the lemon juice . Sprinkle a couple of pinches of salt and plenty of freshly ground pepper - or to taste . Toss the salad to combine at this point , as the marinade starts to soften the vegetables just keep on tossing the salad. About 15 minutes before serving add the finely sliced green onions and chopped parsley. This way the lemon juice does not discolour the spring onions and parsley and the salad looks vibrant and you get to enjoy the freshness of the herbs. At this point check the seasoning of the salad , it should not taste bland or too salty.
You can alter the ratio of mushroom to zucchini according to your taste - it is a very forgiving salad. You can substitute red onion ( very finely sliced) or fresh chives instead of spring onions , if that is what you have on hand or in your garden. The red onions can be added straight away to the mushrooms and zucchini and they will take on the marinade and impart a lovely flavour.