Italians treat vegetables with love and care, respecting the art of cooking them without adding meat due to historically not affording the luxury on a regular basis. It’s a fact that vegetables leave you feeling lighter, digest easier and the nutrition from greens is a must to keep you going.
This Italian recipe, classically grilled and charred vegetables doused in good quality olive oil, basil and lemon is deeply satisfying. The bread has to be superior, white, oily and crusty on the outside. Rubbed with oil, grilled and then rubbed again with garlic, the delicious base lays the foundation for the crunchy charred green vegetables topping.
I made this for lunch, stacked on toast. For a dinner option try adding cannelloni beans, or spiralled pasta and a little parmesan to beef (!) it up.
1 courgette, sliced into thin strips
1/2 red onion, sliced thinly
125g buffalo mozzarella
1 tbsp Olive oil
1 tbsp red wine vinegar
1 tbsp capers, chopped
2 tbsp basil
Sea salt & cracked black pepper
1 tbsp lemon rind
Good quality bread for toasting
1 garlic clove
- Heat griddle pan on stovetop.
- Put sliced onion in a small bowl and cover with cold water. Let sit for 10 minutes, then drain. This will help take the overpowering onion taste away.
- Rub asparagus and courgette in a little olive oil. Griddle in pan until soft and charred lines appear.
- To make dressing, mix olive oil, red wine vinegar, lemon juice, lemon rind, chopped capers, salt and pepper and whisk together with a fork.
- Tear buffalo mozzarella into medium sized pieces.
- When vegetables are ready, place in a bowl along with the onion and some additional salt and pepper.
- Cut bread into thin or thick slices (whatever you prefer). Rub with a little olive oil. Griddle in pan until browned and charred lines appear. Cut garlic clove in half and use it to rub each piece of toast.
- Pour dressing over courgette asparagus mixture, coat evenly. Next add in mozzarella.
- Serve in a bowl or large plate alongside toasted garlic bread