Simply Summer: Zucchini alla Scapece
Italian lesson of the day:
Scapece translates to any vegetable marinated in vinegar and mint. That's all I could find out about the word, usually I know much more about the title of the dish.
This is a popular dish in Naples during the summer when zucchini is falling off the vine.
The hardest part about this recipe is the frying. Zucchini seems to take forever to brown, it's like waiting for a pot of water to boil.
Zucchini alla Scapece:
4 medium zucchini, sliced into rounds
3 garlic cloves, sliced
kosher salt & pepper
olive oil for frying
red wine vinegar
1/4 cup of mint leaves
Slice the zucchini into rounds and season liberally w/ kosher salt & pepper.
(By the way, many people ask what brand of kosher salt I use, and the answer is DIAMOND. It's the real deal, used to be used to kosher chickens back in the day. Don't bother w/ Morton's kosher salt, it's too salty).
In the largest, heaviest skillet you have, heat the olive oil and fry the zucchini in batches, so you don't crowd the vegetable, otherwise it will steam instead of brown.
Add the garlic to the skillet after a few minutes, so it doesn't burn. Try not to disturb the zucchini slices while they are cooking. It should take about 4 minutes on each side.
Remove the zucchini slices to a bowl and fry up the next batch.
While the zucchini is still warm, splash a little red wine vinegar (about 4 tablespoons) over the vegetables and toss w/ fresh mint leaves.
You can refrigerate this overnight and serve cold, like a marinated pickled salad, or serve it straight up, warm or at room temperature.
I love the simplicity of this dish, there's nothing to it, and everything came from the garden.
It's funny how something this simple can taste so good.