Oil-cured zucchini and Savory tapenade —

oil-cured zucchini tapenade

A versatile, savory paste that is super nutritious and flavorful, with or without capers or anchovies, the basic recipe is just 4 ingredients —

1/3 - 1/2 cup oil-cured zucchini pulp (instructions below)
1/3 - 1/2 cup fresh tomato
1 tbs. olive oil
1/4 cup chopped, mixed olives of any color or flavor you like

To make the oil-cured zucchini —

II have about a cup of zucchini pulp every day leftover from my green veggie drink. Lots of experiments with the leftover pulp resulted in this quick technique of draining the pulp in a sieve, then arranging it in a thin square on Teflex, drizzling the top with oil, spreading it with a spatula, then leaving it to to dry overnight at about 100 degrees in a food dehydrator (I use 5-tray Excalibur). The zucchini is like green straw in the morning, greatly reduced, except for the oil, and ready to make recipes for lunch or dinner. If you don't use the zucchini immediately, you can add more oil and keep it in the refrigerator. Thus the name "oil-cured zucchini".

Steph and zucchini tray

• Flax oil is my favorite with this, and full of health-giving Omega-3s, but I have also liked it very much with plain olive oil. Really, any flavorful oil will taste good with dried zucchini. You only need a bit of oil, because as the pulp shrinks to just a scant 1/2 cup, the oil will remain, keeping the pulp somewhat pliable.

Toss this rather crumbly green straw into a food processor with an equal amount of fresh tomato, a bit more oil, and olives. At this point it is fun to add more Mediterranean treats like walnuts, capers, red pepper or lemon if you like. But the basic four ingredients stand on their own.

• Try it on raw nut milk ricotta and flat bread

• Nice as a side-dish with white tuna or poached eggs

• With or without the olives, you can use the pulp as a pretty good pasta substitute in a spinach salad. The one below has crumbled, brined hazelnuts, which is my vegan substitute for feta. I would also not hesitate to use real feta if you have a good supplier in your region.

oil cured zucchini salad

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