Last year I bought a cook book that has become somewhat of a food encyclopedia in our house. The book is Ruhlman’s Twenty in which Michael Ruhlman lays out 20 techniques to make you a better cook. Each of the 20 chapters cover a new technique followed by applicable recipes. The second chapter is titled “Salt: Your Most Important Tool” and walks the reader thru seasoning , curing and brining using salt amongst other things, and even explains how to fix the very common problem of over salting a dish.
My favorite recipe in the Salt chapter is this Raw Zucchini Salad. I usually make this on Sunday night and eat for lunch with a side of toast, or as an easy side dish for chicken, pork or steak throughout the week. The light and fresh taste of this salad never disappoints and paires well will with a variety of foods.
* To complement Ruhlman’s Twenty, there is a Pinterest board dedicated to this book, containing educational cooking technique videos which is well worth to follow.
Michael Ruhlman’s Raw Zucchini Salad
- 1 1/2 pound yellow and green zucchini, julienned (I used a julienne peeler to accomplish this)
- Kosher salt
- 1 tablespoon minced shallots
- 1 garlic clove, minced
- 1 tablespoon lemon juice
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- Freshly ground black pepper
- 1/4 cup toasted slivered almonds
- 1/4 cup finely chopped fresh herbs such as parsley, basil or chives
- Place a colander in a slightly larger bowl, then put julienned zucchini in colander. (The slightly larger bowl will catch liquids released from zucchini).
- Sprinkle with 1 teaspoon salt. Toss and sprinkle with another 1/2 teaspoon salt. Let stand for 10-20 minutes. Zucchini should be limp but still have a bite to them.
- In a small bowl, combine shallot, garlic and lemon juice.
- Shake of moisture from vegetables and taste them. If too salty, just rinse under some water and pat dry. If you feel you need more salt, sprinkle some more onto the vegetables.
- In a medium bowl, toss zucchini with olive oil. Spoon lemon/shallot mixture and fresh herbs on top and gently toss again. Season with black pepper.