Recipe from Donatella Arpaia, a lawyer turned restaurateur and Food Network "Iron Chef" judge. The marinated zucchini salad was inspired by a classic Puglian dish her mother served when she was a child.
For the dressing:
1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
1 teaspoon honey
Zest and juice of 1 lemon
1 clove garlic, diced
2 tablespoons toasted fennel seeds
Salt and ground black pepper
For the marinade:
3/4 cup red wine vinegar
3 large cloves garlic, finely chopped
Kosher salt and ground black pepper
30 fresh mint leaves, finely sliced
For the zucchini:
Olive oil, for frying
3 to 4 medium zucchini, sliced diagonally into 1/4-inch rounds
6 cups arugula (preferably the smaller, spicy variety known as rocket)
1/4 cup ricotta salata
To prepare the dressing, in a small bowl whisk together the oil, honey, lemon zest and juice, garlic and fennel seeds. Season with salt and pepper, then set aside.
To prepare the marinade, in a small bowl combine the vinegar, garlic and 1/4 teaspoon each of salt and pepper. Add the mint and set aside.
In a large skillet over medium-high, heat about 1/4 inch of olive oil until hot but not smoking. Working in batches if necessary, slide the zucchini slices into the skillet in a single layer. Do not crowd the skillet. Fry, turning the slices often with a fork, for 7 minutes, or until golden and flecked with dark spots.
As the zucchini slices finish frying, transfer them to the marinade. Let the zucchini marinate for at least 10 minutes.
To assemble the salad, place the arugula in a large bowl. Remove the zucchini slices from the marinade and add to the arugula. Drizzle with the dressing, then toss gently. Top with shaved ricotta salata.
Per serving: 220 calories; 180 calories from fat (81 percent of total calories); 20 g fat (3 g saturated; 0 g trans fats); 5 mg cholesterol; 7 g carbohydrate; 3 g protein; 2 g fiber; 350 mg sodium.
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