Granny’s Hot Zucchini Salad
August 8, 2010
This is a great summer dish, especially if you have a garden and have a plethora of zucchini, or other summer squash, and tomatoes, as I hear many people with gardens complaining about. (I really wish I had that problem myself!!) We just stopped by the Green City Farmer’s market in Lincoln Park and picked up some gorgeous yellow and green zucchinis and Roma tomatoes.
Granny always served this with rice, that I can remember, but Suzy had a great idea of tossing it with pasta, like rotini or fusilli, which I think I’m going to do as a main dish for dinner sometime next week. Last night we had it as a side dish, on it’s own (no rice), accompanying bbq chicken (we’ve been using Paula Deen’s “Daddy’s Tangy Grillin’ Sauce” recipe a lot lately…it’s REALLY yummy), and sweet potato fries.
Aunt Suzy says
Yes, this is the perfect recipe for this time of year – even if you don’t have a garden overrun with zucchini and tomatoes, I bet you know someone who does!! I think that it was the 1970’s when all of a sudden zucchini starting popping up in everyone’s garden, prompting an outpouring of things to do with it. (Even though I just learned from The Big Zucchini website that the vegetable originated in the Americas and has been traced back to roughly 6000 B.C.!!) I’m not sure where my Mom got this recipe, but it was a summer standby when neighbors starting pressing their overabundance of zukes and tomatoes on neighbors. Lucky us! Not sure why this is called a salad – maybe because it’s so fresh-tasting. Margaux’s menu sounds yummy – here are a couple of other options. Last weekend we made this for friends and served it with Green Rice, something Margaux has mentioned that we will add to the blog at some point. This time we served it with spaghetti/garlic/olive oil/parmegiano and grilled chicken breast. In both cases, a white Cotes du Rhone paired nicely.
A note on the ingredients/quantities: We both made this recently and will indicate measured amounts we used for each ingredient, but this is really one of those recipes that you can throw in however much you have of the ingredients. I saw a version of this from a search result (not called the same thing) that said you could add okra!
1-2 yellow or red onions, cut into 2-inch chunks
1-2 cloves garlic, minced
3-4 ripe tomatoes, seeded and cut into 1-inch chunks, Roma or regular red garden tomatoes
1-3 zucchinis, cut into 1-inch chunks (can use any type of summer squash – yellow, green or pattypans in addition to zukes)
2 Tablespoons EV olive oil
1 Tablespoon butter
2 Tablespoons chopped fresh oregano
1/3 cup sliced fresh basil
Salt and pepper to taste
Margaux’s amounts: I used one very large yellow onion, two cloves of garlic, 4 Roma tomatoes (2 cups) and 3 zucchinis (3 cups). I added about 1/4 cup each of fresh oregano and basil.
Aunt Suzy’s amounts: I used two medium red onions (2 cups), one large clove garlic, 6 Roma tomatoes (2 1/2 cups), 2 medium zucchinis (5 cups) and one Hungarian pepper courtesy of my neighbor. I added 2 Tablespoons oregano (we have that really strong Greek kind) and 1/3 cup basil.
Coat the bottom of a large saucepan with olive oil and heat to medium. Add the butter and melt till bubbling, then add the onion. Saute, stirring regularly, until the onion starts to soften. Add the garlic and stir for 1-2 minutes until fragrant. Add the tomatoes and the zucchini and stir to blend all ingredients. Bring to a bubble, then reduce heat and simmer for 15 minutes, stirring every 5 minutes during that time. Cook until the zucchini is softened but not mushy. The 15 minutes might do it or you may need 5-10 more minutes. Stir in the fresh herbs and cook 1-2 minutes to blend flavors. Be careful not to overcook! Serve hot as a side dish. Delicious as a side to or over rice or pasta.