donna hay - - CONTENTS - pho­tog­ra­phy CHRIS COURT styling STEVE PEARCE

The veg­etable favourite, zuc­chini, is at its best and brim­ming with de­li­cious pos­si­bil­i­ties for warm spring days

The abun­dance

of pos­si­bil­i­ties cre­ated by beau­ti­ful zuc­chini va­ri­eties has in­spired us to put it front and cen­tre with th­ese fresh recipes for warm spring days.

crab, ri­cotta and tar­ragon stuffed zuc­chini flow­ers

150g cooked picked crab meat ¾ cup (180g) ri­cotta 2 tea­spoons finely grated lemon rind 2 ta­ble­spoons finely chopped tar­ragon sea salt flakes 16 zuc­chini (cour­gette) flow­ers ( see page 97) veg­etable oil, for deep-fry­ing 2 ta­ble­spoons self-rais­ing (self-ris­ing) flour lemon wedges, to serve bat­ter 1 cup (150g) corn­flour (corn­starch) ½ cup (75g) self-rais­ing (self-ris­ing) flour 1¾ cups (430ml) iced wa­ter To make the bat­ter, place the corn­flour, self-rais­ing flour and wa­ter in a large bowl and mix with a but­ter knife un­til just com­bined (the mix­ture will be a bit lumpy). Set aside for 10 min­utes to stand.

Place the crab meat, ri­cotta, lemon rind, tar­ragon and 1 tea­spoon of the salt in a medium bowl and mix to com­bine. Place in a pip­ing bag fit­ted with a 1cm round noz­zle and pipe the mix­ture into each zuc­chini flower, twist­ing the petals to en­close.

Half-fill a large saucepan with oil. Place over medium heat un­til it reaches 180°C (350°F) on a deep-fry­ing ther­mome­ter. In batches, dust the zuc­chini flow­ers in the flour, then dip in the bat­ter. Cook for 2–3 min­utes or un­til golden. Drain and serve with salt and lemon wedges. SERVES 4.

char­grilled zuc­chini with gar­lic and lemon

5 green and grey zuc­chini (cour­gette) (about 1kg),

thinly sliced length­ways 1 clove gar­lic, crushed 1 tea­spoon finely grated lemon rind ¼ cup (60ml) ex­tra vir­gin olive oil sea salt and cracked black pep­per ½ cup flat-leaf pars­ley leaves, finely chopped ½ tea­spoon chilli flakes sliced bread, to serve Pre­heat a char­grill pan or bar­be­cue over high heat. Cook the zuc­chini, in batches, for 3 min­utes each side or un­til charred and cooked through.

While the zuc­chini is cook­ing, place the gar­lic, lemon rind, oil, salt and pep­per in a medium bowl and mix to com­bine.

Gen­tly toss the zuc­chini in the oil mix­ture. Top with the pars­ley and chilli flakes and serve with the bread. SERVES 4.

mixed zuc­chini and green tomato salad

2 tea­spoons Di­jon mus­tard 2 ta­ble­spoons lemon juice 2 ta­ble­spoons ex­tra vir­gin olive oil 2 tea­spoons honey sea salt and cracked black pep­per 500g mixed zuc­chini (cour­gette)+, thinly sliced

on a man­do­line 4 green toma­toes, thinly sliced 1 lemon, thinly sliced 200g aged goat’s cheese++, rind on, thinly sliced 2 cups (40g) wood­land sor­rel leaves+++ 1 pun­net mi­cro (baby) lemon balm, to serve Place the mus­tard, lemon juice, oil, honey, salt and pep­per in a small bowl and whisk to com­bine. Set aside.

Place the zuc­chini, tomato, lemon, goat’s cheese and sor­rel on a large serv­ing plat­ter. Top with lemon balm, salt and pep­per and driz­zle with the dress­ing to serve. SERVES 4. + We used a mix­ture of green, grey and round zuc­chini (see page 97). ++ You can find aged goat’s cheese in spe­cialty gro­cers. If it is un­avail­able, sub­sti­tute firm goat’s cheese. +++ You can find wood­land sor­rel leaves in spe­cialty green­gro­cers or farm­ers mar­kets.

prawn and chorizo zuc­chini pasta

2 air-dried chorizo (about 300g), cas­ings

re­moved, chopped 2 ta­ble­spoons ex­tra vir­gin olive oil 2 cloves gar­lic, thinly sliced 20 medium green (raw) tiger prawns (shrimp)

(about 500g), peeled and roughly chopped 5 zuc­chini (cour­gette) (about 1kg), spi­ralised

or shred­ded us­ing a juli­enne peeler sea salt and cracked black pep­per finely grated parme­san, to serve Place the chorizo in a food pro­ces­sor and process un­til finely chopped. Heat the oil in a large fry­ing pan over high heat. Add the chorizo and cook, stir­ring oc­ca­sion­ally, for 4 min­utes. Add the gar­lic and prawn and cook for 5 min­utes or un­til the prawn is cooked and chorizo is crispy. Re­move from the heat.

Add the zuc­chini, salt and pep­per and toss to com­bine. Di­vide be­tween plates and sprin­kle with the parme­san to serve. SERVES 4.

prawn and chorizo zuc­chini pasta

mixed zuc­chini and green tomato salad

mus­tard and cumin pick­led zuc­chini

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