Updated from the TasteFood archives
Abundance is a good thing, and at this time of year when the garden has a seemingly endless supply of late summer squash or courgettes, it helps to have a repertoire of recipes that puts these gifts to good use. I discovered this amazingly simple salad of Zucchini and Pecorino Cheese with Truffle Oil in Florence last summer. In true Italian style, this salad has a minimum of ingredients. The key lies in their quality, since they are the stars of the show. In this case, end-of-summer zucchini is paired with a nutty, mildly piquant Pecorino Cheese and dressed with high quality extra-virgin olive oil and white truffle oil. The olive oil will bind the salad, while the truffle oil will seve as garnish. This is also economically efficient, as truffle oil is pricey – you need only to use it sparingly as the final flourish. (Keep your truffle oil in the refrigerator, and it should last between 3-6 months before its aroma begins to weaken.) I bought this bottle directly from the restaurant that served me the salad – my favorite kind of souvenir.
Zucchini Ribbons with Pecorino Cheese and Truffle Oil
As soon as the zucchini is salted it will begin to sweat, so prepare salad immediately before serving. Serves 4-6 as a side dish or appetizer
4 medium-sized zucchini, about 1 1/2 pounds
2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
1 tablespoon white truffle oil
Sea salt, about 1 teaspoon or to taste
Freshly ground black pepper
1/4 cup shaved pecorino cheese such as Pecorino Sardo or Pecorino Toscana
Trim ends of zucchini. Peel the zucchini with a vegetable peeler lengthwise in long ribbons, rotating to peel evenly, stopping when you see the seeds. Discard core. Place zucchini ribbons in a medium-sized bowl. Add extra-virgin olive oil, truffle oil, sea salt and pepper. Toss gently to combine. Arrange on salad plates or in bowls. Sprinkle with Pecorino shavings.