I love zucchini.
I’ve said it before. I’ve talked about my love of it from my youngest of days. The smell of pan roasted zucchini and onions is one of my most treasured nostalgia moments. I’m immediately transported to a place of comfort no matter how difficult a day can be.
I was roasting buckwheat groats earlier for a couple of projects that I’m testing out (Simply add a cup of uncooked buckwheat groats to a dry wok over medium high heat and stir vigorously while shaking the wok to toss, ensuring an even roasting, over the course of ten minutes or so until golden throughout). Firstly, soba noodles. Let’s just say that’s a work in progress. It’s as much an art as sushi. A life-long commitment to excellence. The other project was for a cool beverage. A twist on Japanese mugicha, but using buckwheat instead of barley. That was a much greater success. Nutty, sweet and refreshing served cold.
I had some roasted buckwheat left to make a salad tonight. I decided to incorporate the pan roasted zucchini that brought my mood back to level and the roasted buckwheat. Some cauliflower and juicy summer peaches tied together all the flavours wonderfully.
Roasted Cauliflower Zucchini Buckwheat Salad with Peaches
For the Roasted Cauliflower & Zucchini:
2 tsp cold pressed canola oil
1-1/2 cups cauliflower florets, roughly 2cm/1″ pieces
1-1/2 cups zucchini(courgette), cut into rough 2cm/1″ chunks
1/2 cup onion, sliced thinly
In a large nonstick pan, heat the oil over medium high heat. Add the cauliflower and zucchini. Allow to pan roast for 4-5 minutes until golden on one side. Add the onion, toss, stir and pan roast for another 4-5 minutes to get a uniform golden colour on all sides. Add 1/4 cup water and simmer, maintaining the medium high heat, until the water evaporates and cooks the cauliflower through completely. Remove from the pan and allow to cool completely.
For the salad:
2 cups roasted buckwheat groats (or regular buckwheat is fine), cooked (takes about 12-15 minutes to cook in plenty of water and drained)
2 peaches, halved and pits removed
1/4 cup vinegar
1/4 tsp salt
1/4 tsp pepper
Reserved Roasted Cauliflower and Zucchini
In a blender, add one of the peaches with the vinegar, salt and pepper. Purée until smooth. Set aside.
In a large bowl, combine the buckwheat and Roasted Cauliflower and Zucchini mixture. Cut the remaining peach into 1cm (1/2″) pieces and fold gently into the salad with the peach-vinegar puree. Serves 3-4.