The very first time that I read this recipe, I was fascinated. This is a take on the classic Venetian appetizer of raw beef, only it’s a vegetarian version. Zucchini, sliced very thin is served raw with chopped arugula, drizzled with extra-virgin olive oil, a few drops of balsamic and finished with slivers of shaved Parmigiano-Reggiano. My mouth is watering just thinking about it.
I think what I love most about this dish is that you can whip it up in mere moments. If you’re having guests, they’ll be suitably impressed as it’s beautiful to look at and once they take a bite, they’ll be your best friend forever, or at least until they finish off the platter.
I would be remiss if I didn’t mention the cookbook where I discovered this recipe-Red, White & Greens by Faith Heller Willinger. This book is really a great tutorial on the simplicity of preparing vegetables the Italian way.
2 small fresh zucchini
1/3 cup tightly packed arugula, roughly chopped
3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
1 teaspoon balsamic vinegar
Sea or kosher salt
Freshly ground pepper
a 4 oz. piece of Parmigiano-Reggiano
Trim the ends off the zucchini and slice into paper thin rounds usinga mandoline or vegetable slicer-be careful. Place the zucchini slices on a large platter.
Chop the arugula and sprinkle over the zucchini. Drizzle with the olive oil and the balsamic vinegar and season with salt and pepper. Shave curls of Parmigaino-Reggiano directly over the platter to cover the zucchini. Serve immediately.