This salad comes together in ten minutes–so you can reasonably make it before or after work–and is really satisfying. I’ve eaten it every night this week. I often bring it to work for lunch; it’d be equally great for a picnic.
The order of ingredients allows what needs to marinate to marinate while you prep the next ingredient, so don’t feel as if you need to create a mise en place before you start this recipe. Prep, pour, and stir the ingredients in order; by the time everything is in the bowl, the salad will have melded.
Serve with fresh, crackling bread to mop up the vinaigrette at the bottom of the bowl, or over rice. Use as a vegetarian/vegan taco filling. Or, make ahead and spoon onto crostini for an easy hors d’oeuvre.
Additions/Substitutions: You can add chopped nuts to this salad, like toasted walnuts or crushed pistachios. Or, pepitas. Add cheese: shaved pecorino, cubed mozzarella, diced-and-pan cooked halloumi, fresh goat cheese. Add extra protein in the form of poached chicken or tofu. If you’ve been gifted a fancy oil–I have walnut and butternut squash in my pantry currently–swap it for the olive oil.
*You can shred the zucchini with a box grater, but I’m obsessed with this; I use it almost every day. (Not sponsored.)
This salad tastes even better the second day, and is good for up to 4 days in the fridge. Serves 6
- 2 small/1 large (350 gram|3/4-pound) zucchini, ends trimmed, shredded*
- 2 teaspoons kosher salt
- 1 14-ounce (400 gram) can OR 1 1/4 cup (245 grams) cooked small white beans
- 1 14-ounce (400 gram) can OR 1 1/4 cup (215 grams) cooked French lentils
- 6 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
- 3 cups (300 grams) mixed cherry tomatoes, halved
- 1/4 cup fancy olive oil
- 1 bird chili, minced into a paste OR 1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes
- 1 small (330 gram) red cabbage, thinly sliced
- 5 cups (140 grams) arugula, roughly chopped
- 1 small bunch (35 grams) fresh parsley, chopped
- In a large mixing bowl, spoon together the kosher salt with the shredded zucchini. Rinse the can goop from the white beans and the lentils; add them to the mixing bowl, and stir everything together. Add the lemon juice, halved cherry tomatoes, and 1/2 of the olive oil; again stir to coat. Add the chili and the cabbage; stir again. Add the remaining olive oil, arugula, parsley, and sea salt; fold in those ingredients a bit more gently. Let the bowl sit for five minutes; eat!