This salad is SO delicious and a brilliant way to make the most of seasonal courgettes. It’s fresh and crunchy, with different colours, textures and flavours all drenched in the most moreish nutty sauce. Eat it as it is topped with salted peanuts, herbs and chillies for the best summer lunch. It makes a great packed lunch too.
Ingredients (serves 2)
1 courgette, spiralised
1 carrot, grated
1/2 a red pepper, thinly sliced
1/8 of a red cabbage, thinly sliced
1 scallion, thinly sliced
1 red chilli, thinly sliced
a handful of fresh herbs (coriander and mint go well here)
a couple of handfuls of salted peanuts
For the dressing:
3 heaped tbsp of peanut butter
1 lime, juiced
1 thumb of fresh ginger, finely grated
1 clove of garlic, crushed
2 tbsp soy sauce
2 tbsp toasted sesame oil
a few splashes of cold water
Start by preparing the vegetables and pilling them up in a large salad bowl or in serving bowls or lunch boxes.
Make the dressing by mixing the ingredients together in a bowl or jug, loosen the dressing with small splashes of cold water and keep mixing until you get a smooth, pourable sauce.
Drizzle the sauce over the vegetables and top with chilli slices, fresh herb and salted peanuts. Enjoy right away. If you want to serve it later, keep the vegetables and dressing separate in the fridge until you are ready to serve.
One of our favourite summer dishes, we love this with pasta or bread and a big bowl of salad. For the filling, use any soft cheese you prefer, mixed with fresh herbs or a big scoop of pesto. We usually use our homemade tofu ricotta (here’s the recipe) but a mix of cream cheese and feta is delicious too. Make your own tomato sauce or use a jar of ready made.
Ingredients (serves 4-6)
1 batch of tomato sauce (from a jar or sauté a diced onion and 4 crushed garlic cloves in 3 tbsp olive oil until soft, add a tin of chopped tomatoes and half a tin of water, season with salt and pepper and simmer for 10 minutes)
400g soft cheese (use any you prefer, a mix of feta and cream cheese or vegan versions, we like to use our homemade garlic and herb ricotta)
a large handful of chopped herbs or a couple of tbsp of pesto
olive oil, salt & pepper to taste
Make the tomato sauce and pour it into an oven proof dish. Pre-heat the oven to 180C.
Make a batch of garlic and herb tofu ricotta or mix any soft cheese you prefer with chopped herbs or pesto.
Use a potato peeler or a cheese slicer to cut the courgette into long, thin strips.
Place a heaped tsp of the herby cheese mixture on the end of a courgette slice. Then roll it up and place it, seam down, into the tomato sauce. Repeat until you have filled the dish or used up all the courgette slices.
Drizzle the rolls with olive oil and season with salt and pepper. Bake in the oven until bubbling and golden – around 15 to 20 minutes.
This simple pasta is very fast, very easy and very delicious. The perfect weekday supper. Courgettes are coming in thick and fast now so do enjoy them and use the search bar in the blog to find lots more courgette inspiration. You can substitute the cashew nuts in this recipe for sunflower seeds or any nut/seed you prefer. No need to be too exact with the ingredients, this pasta recipe is very easy-going, as all weekday dinners should be. Enjoy!
Ingredients (serves 4)
200g cashews covered in just boiled water
1 heaped tsp Dijon mustard
1 tsp garlic granules
2 heaped tbsp nutritional yeast
the juice of 1/2 a lemon
salt & pepper to taste
1 tbsp olive oil
1 or 2 courgettes, thinly sliced
4 portions of spaghetti, cooked in salted, boiling water
1 large mug of the starchy water that the pasta was boiled in
a large handful of chopped herbs eg dill, parsley and mint
Soak your cashews and get a large pot of water on to boil. Thinly slice the courgette and find a wide pan.
When the water is boiling, generously salt it and tip in your spaghetti. While it cooks make the creamy courgette sauce.
Put a large pan onto a medium heat and add the olive oil and sliced courgettes. Season well with salt and pepper then sauté gently to soften and wilt the courgettes.
Blend the soaked cashews in their soaking water with the mustard, garlic granules, nutritional yeast, lemon juice and season to taste with salt and pepper. Scrape the cashew cream into the pan of courgettes and steal a mug of starchy pasta water from the pot. Add it to the courgettes and cashew cream to loosen and simmer into a gently bubbling sauce.
Drain the pasta and toss it through the sauce. Serve with extra black pepper and a sprinkle of fresh herbs.
Here’s a sweet way to use up your courgette glut. Grated courgette keeps a cake wonderfully moist and the little flecks of green are so pretty. But be careful, when creating this recipe I had a fair few flops before getting it right, don’t be tempted to add more courgette than the recipe states. The extra moisture can put the balance out of whack and make the cake sink after it comes out of the oven.
I made this in a loaf tin so it took about an hour to bake, but if you bake it in a round cake tin it will cook much quicker as there is more surface area and a shallower batter, just keep an eye on it. Why not double the recipe and bake two round cakes to sandwich together? Make a simple lemon buttercream and decorate with raspberries and pistachios for a real summery treat.
250g grated courgette
300g plain flour
200g caster sugar
1 tsp bicarbonate of soda
a pinch of salt
100ml oat milk
100ml olive oil
zest and juice of 1/2 a lemon (reserve the other half of the lemon juice and zest for the icing)
Lemon Drizzle Icing
the juice of half a lemon
enough icing sugar to bring it into a consistency you like
the zest of half the lemon to decorate
Pre-heat your oven to 175C and line a loaf tin.
Mix the dry ingredients (flour, sugar, salt, bicarb) together in a large mixing bowl so that they are evenly dispersed.
Add the wet ingredients (oat milk, oil, lemon juice) and stir to just combine. Do not over-mix. This batter should be fairly dry and thick to compensate for the water content of the courgette.
Add the grated courgette and lemon zest to the bowl and use a wooden spoon to fold the mixture together into a thick batter.
Scrape the batter into the lined loaf tin and level it out.
Bake in the centre of the oven for 1 hour or until it’s cooked through. If your oven is fan assisted it may cook faster. Test for ‘doneness’ by inserting a skewer into the centre of the loaf. When pulled out it should be fairly clean.
Allow the cake to cool for 5 minutes or so in the tin before carefully pulling it out onto a cooling rack. Let it cool completely before icing.
To make the icing, squeeze the juice of the other half of the lemon into a bowl and whisk in spoons of icing sugar until you reach your desired consistency. I like it quite runny so it just creates a delicate glaze over the cake but if you prefer a whiter, thicker icing, keep adding sugar until the mixture is fairly thick.
Spoon the icing over the cooled cake and, while it is still wet, sprinkle over the reserved lemon zest. Allow the icing to set then serve in thick slices with mugs of Earl Grey tea.
Ratatouille is a classic one pot celebration of summer vegetables. Although it’s a simple recipe, with humble ingredients, it’s all about timings and getting the vegetables cooked just right. Spongey, undercooked aubergine is the reason many people don’t like it. Aubergine should be silky and soft, and almost melt in the mouth and then it’s absolutely stunning! Serve with some good bread and a glass of red. We often add a drained tin or two of white beans or lentils to this summer stew to boost the protein and make it an even heartier meal.
Why not make a double or triple batch and get some in the freezer for a busy day? You could even blend some for a quick summery soup or a flavoursome pasta sauce.
Ingredients (serves 4-6)
4 tbsp olive oil
2 red pepper
4-6 tomatoes (or 12 cherry tomatoes, or a couple of tins of chopped tomatoes)
6 cloves of garlic – peeled and diced
3 tbsp red wine vinegar
salt and pepper to taste
basil to taste
Pre-heat your oven to 200C.
Chop the aubergine and peppers into bite sized pieces. Put them in a deep roasting dish and drizzle with the olive oil.
Season well with salt and pepper, mix with your hands to evenly coat the vegetables in the seasoning. Then put the dish in the oven to roast for 20 minutes.
After 20 minutes, remove the dish from the oven and add the courgettes and tomatoes, also cut into bite sized pieces.
Add the garlic, red wine vinegar and a little more salt and pepper. Mix well and return to the oven for another 20 minutes or until everything is well cooked.
Stir through lots of freshly torn basil and serve in bowls with fresh bread. Or it’s lovely with pasta or potatoes. Bulk it out and add protein with a drained tin of white beans or green lentils.
Got a glut of courgettes? We’ve got the recipes. As well as this classic quick pickle, a delicious solution for many excess veg, I’ve shared a fair few other courgette recipes. Just pop ‘courgette’ in the search bar and they’ll come up.
Quick pickles do what they say on the tin. They are quick and simple to put together and they are ready to eat in just a couple of days. You can definitely eat them earlier too, I just think the flavours develop better after a couple of days in the fridge. They last a long time too, especially if you sterilise the jar and close it while the vinegar solution is still hot. Keep the pickles in the fridge and don’t double dip and they should last for 2 months, if you don’t eat them up in that time… don’t store these pickles at room temperature unless you can them, which is a whole other process.
Pickled courgettes are so delicious in a sandwich or burger, with cheese and crackers or as a tangy, crunchy part of a salad. You can also flavour them however you like. Go herby with dill, spicy with chilli, use classic pickling spices, bay leaves, garlic, ginger…whatever you like! Enjoy! Liz x
Ingredients (makes 2 medium jars, around a litre volume)
flavourings of your choice – I used: 3 sliced cloves of garlic, 1 tsp ground turmeric, 1 tsp mustard seeds, 1/2 tsp black pepper
1/2 a white onion
Start by finding 2 small jars (or 1 big one? – it all depends on how much pickle you’re making or the size of your courgettes) and giving them a really good clean and hot rinse. Or you can sterilise them to be extra safe. Put the washed and rinsed jars in a clean sink then fill them with freshly boiled water from the kettle. Wait a minute then carefully empty the jars (use oven gloves or a folded tea towel so you don’t burn your hands). Let them air dry while you get on with chopping and heating up your vinegar solution.
Measure the vinegar, water, salt and sugar into a small pan and heat it up while you quickly add the flavourings to the jars and chop the vegetables.
Divide your flavourings between your jars. Then thinly slice the courgette and onion and divide them between the jars too. Lightly press the vegetables down into the jars to pack them in neatly, but don’t crush them. You should leave a couple of cm of room in the jar.
As the vinegar solution comes to the boil, take it off the heat and pour it into the jars over the vegetables and flavourings. The solution should cover the vegetables. Give the jars a light tap on the work surface to remove any air bubbles that may be trapped between the layers of vegetables. Then screw on the lids whilst the jars are still hot. You may not use all the vinegar solution, or you may need to make a bit more.
Allow them to cool then refrigerate. The pickles will be ready to eat in two days and will last in the fridge for 2 months.
Courgette caviar is a Russian/Ukrainian spread made from slowly cooking summer vegetables down into a rustic and delicious purée. The long, slow sauté reduces and caramelises the vegetables together, elevating these humble ingredients into a stunning jar of flavour. This is so much more than a stew. Slow cooked courgettes have the most wonderful texture, you can also use aubergines or a combination of the two. It’s just a brilliant way of using up a glut of courgettes and other summer veggies. If we are having a barbecue, I sometimes chuck a few courgettes and aubergines (also peppers, whole bulbs of garlic, carrots…) on to get smokey and soft then make this purée with those. It’s amazing, the smokiness really comes through. Just peel off any very blackened bits of skin and sauté and crush the vegetables together in the pan until reduced.
Enjoy cold on good bread or with crackers. It’s delicious as part of a picnic spread with cheese, pickles, ferments etc. Or heat it up and loosen it with some pasta water for a quick pasta sauce. It’s an incredible pizza sauce base too! I have never tried making a huge batch and keeping the jars in a cellar, but if you have the know-how and the right equipment, that’s a great way to preserve the fruits of summer. But making the recipe as per the method below, the jar should last well in the fridge for two weeks.
Ingredients* (makes a large jar approximately 1 litre)
*don’t worry too much about amounts and the ingredients can vary too! Leave out the pepper, add aubergine, use fresh tomatoes, add more or less garlic… it’s more about the technique of slowly cooking down and caramelising the vegetables together than getting the proportions and ingredients exact. I suppose starchy vegetables like potatoes wouldn’t work here, but most other vegetables will be fine. Use any combination that you like. Here’s what I did this time:
6 cloves of garlic
a generous slick of olive oil to coat your pot/pan, plus extra to to top the jar
1 red pepper
1 tin of chopped tomatoes
salt to taste
optional extras like black pepper, dill or fennel seeds, coriander seeds, chilli…
Start by dicing or grating all your ingredients.
In a large, heavy bottomed saucepan or pot, heat up a generous slick of olive oil and add the diced onion. Keep the pot at medium high and stir fry the onions until they start to soften and colour.
Add the garlic, courgettes, carrots, pepper and a big pinch of salt. Sauté, stirring regularly for at least 30 minutes. You will need to lower the heat as you go. It’s nice if the vegetables caramelise and slightly catch on the bottom of the pan. Just keep scraping the base of the pan with a wooden spoon.
Crush the vegetables together with the back of the wooden spoon, or use a masher to help you along.
When the vegetables are reduced and drying out, add the tomatoes and keep cooking, stirring and reducing. You should end up with a rich, thick purée. You can keep it rustic or blend it smooth.
Pack the mixture while it’s still hot into a large, sterilised jar. Add a layer of olive oil and put the lid on. This should make it last longer.
Keep it in the fridge. It should last well for 2 weeks.
Involtini in Italian means ‘rolls’ and this aubergine version is one of my all time favourite dishes. I am obsessed with aubergine, perhaps it’s because I used to hate it as a child and now I’m making up for lost time? But whenever aubergine season hits, this recipe is at the top of my list. I also make this with courgettes in place of the aubergines sometimes, especially when there’s a lot of them to use up. Griddled courgette strips are so tasty so give that version a try too.
The filling can be whatever you want it to be. I usually go for something simple like a mixture of cheese (vegan feta or cashew cheese are my favs) and pesto. But roasted and crushed squash with toasted pine nuts or hazelnuts is also really good! Perfect for that summer-autumn crossover. Let us know in the comments what fillings worked well for you?
Ingredients (serves 4-6)
4 tbsp olive oil
salt & pepper to taste
2 jars of Napoli tomato sauce (or make your own tomato sauce by sautéing a diced onion and 4 cloves of garlic with a little olive oil until soft, then add 2 tins of chopped tomatoes, salt and pepper to taste and some torn basil leaves and simmer for 15 minutes or so)
130g jar of pesto
200-300g cheese of your choice (feta works really well here – I use my tofu feta recipe found at the end of this blog post, otherwise we stock a variety of plant based cheeses and organic feta)
pasta or fresh bread to serve
Find a medium sized, deep roasting dish and turn your oven to 200C to warm up while you prepare the dish.
If you’re not using our tasty, ready made tomato sauce, make a simple batch yourself using two 400g tins of chopped tomatoes. I sautéed a diced onion with a couple of tbsp of olive oil and 4 cloves of garlic until soft and just starting to colour. Then tipped in the two tins of tomatoes (swirled out the remaining tomatoey juices from the tins with a little water and added that to the pot too) and seasoned with salt and pepper. Then simmered the sauce with some torn basil leaves for around 10-15 minutes until it was rich and delicious.
Keep the sauce warm while you prepare the aubergines and filling.
Slice the tops off the aubergine as close to the stalk as possible, then peel or slice off any still-attached leafy bits. Carefully cut the aubergines into around 4mm thick, long strips.
Pour the olive oil into a small bowl or glass and season it with a big pinch of salt and pepper. Then brush the aubergine slices with the seasoned olive oil and grill them in batches in a griddle pan, or under a hot grill in the oven. Turn halfway through. They should be soft and beautifully charred but still manageable. As they cook, lay them out on a large chopping board or clean worksurface ready for stuffing and rolling.
Meanwhile make your filling. I mashed about 300g of feta with a jar of pesto.
Pour the warm tomato sauce into your baking dish and start assembling the involtini.
Place a tablespoon of filling at the end of a griddled aubergine slice. Then roll it up and tuck the roll, seam side down, into the tomato sauce.
Repeat until all the rolls are stuffed. Then place the dish in the oven and bake for around 15-20 minutes or until hot and bubbling.
Serve with freshly boiled pasta or some crusty bread and enjoy!
Fritters are a fab summer lunch with salads and a great way to use up a glut of vegetables. Courgettes are having their ‘glut moment’ on the farm right now, so here’s a delicious courgette fritter recipe for you to try if you get a lot of courgettes in your box and you’re stuck for ideas.
I usually make a gram flour (chickpea flour) batter of just gram flour, water and seasoning, and then stir in shredded/finely chopped veg to make fritters, but I didn’t have any gram flour so here’s a wheat and corn flour variety which works well too! Fritters are fairly forgiving, just use whatever flour you have in. Courgettes are quite watery vegetables, so I like to grate and salt them, then after the salt has drawn the liquid out, mix in enough flour to make a fairly thick batter. No need to add any other liquid or you’ll end up with soggy rather than crisp fritters!
Ingredients (makes 6-8 fritters)
1 large or 2 small courgettes
a large pinch of salt (about 1/2 a tsp or to taste)
black pepper to taste
a big handful of chopped dill or fennel fronds (or any herbs you like – mint or parsley work well)
a block of feta, crumbled (or make my tofu feta recipe here)
4 tbsp plain flour (or more/less – see method)
4 tbsp cornflour/cornstarch (or more/less – see method)
olive oil for frying
lemon wedges, salad & tzatziki to serve
Start by grating your courgettes into a large mixing bowl. Use the course side of the grater.
Sprinkle over the pinch of salt and pepper and mix well. Then taste and decide if you’d like to add more. The courgettes should just taste pleasantly seasoned.
Give the salt time to draw the liquid out of the courgettes and use this time to prepare some salads and make a tzatziki (simply mix grated cucumber through thick yoghurt, season with salt, pepper and a little crushed garlic, stir well and add a drizzle of extra virgin olive oil and fresh dill or mint).
Once the courgettes are wet, this only takes 10 minutes or less, you can start adding the flour. I like to use an even mix of cornflour and plain flour. The corn flour makes the fritters a little crispier.
Add one heaped tbsp of each flour to the wet courgettes then stir the mixture. Keep adding more of both flours and stirring until you have a thick fritter batter. If your courgette is very watery you’ll need more flour, if it’s drier you’ll need less.
Then stir through the herbs and crumbled feta and warm up a frying pan to medium with a generous slick of olive oil in the bottom of the pan.
Fry spoons of the mixture in small batches in the pan. Turn over after 3-5 minutes, once golden brown and crispy underneath and fry the other side for a further 3-5 minutes.
Keep the heat at medium, don’t be tempted to turn it to high or you may get fritters which are burned on the outside and raw and doughy in the middle.
Serve with salads and tzatziki for a lovely lunch. The fritters are delicious eaten hot with a squeeze of lemon. Or pop the fritters into a burger bun or sandwich as a summery veggie burger or sandwich filler alternative.
We are in the midst of a classic courgette glut on the farm. Next week we’ll add some free courgettes to all the boxes, we hope you enjoy them. Expect lots of courgette recipes to come your way. We’d love to know your favourite courgette recipes too please! Let us know in the comments or over on our community Facebook group. I’ll start us off with this super simple salad. It’s so easy to make (just a matter of combining raw courgettes with a lemony dressing, then scattering over some toasted hazelnuts) and oh SO delicious! I have this salad often this time of year as a side to pretty much any meal, or it’s brilliant stirred through freshly boiled pasta or bulked out with a drained tin of lentils.
Courgettes (2 small or 1 large)
2-3 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
the juice of half a small lemon (have you tried our new season verdelli lemons?)
1 small garlic clove, crushed
salt and pepper to taste
a handful or two of hazelnuts, toasted in a dry pan then roughly chopped
Using a potato peeler, slice the courgettes into delicate, thin ribbons. For ease, slice them directly over a serving platter or large salad bowl.
Make the dressing by stirring together the olive oil, lemon juice and crushed garlic with a pinch of salt and pepper.
Drizzle the dressing over the courgette ribbons. You could toss the salad now to evenly coat the ribbons with the dressing, or just leave it drizzly.
Then toast the hazelnuts in a dry frying pan until nicely coloured. Tip them onto a board and carefully chop them up a bit to make them go further through the salad.
Scatter them over the dressed ribbons and finish the salad with a little sprinkle of flakey sea salt. We LOVE Achill Island sea salt for exactly this type of dish.
Enjoy as is as part of a salad buffet or alongside a BBQ. Or make it a light, refreshing meal by tossing through some freshly boiled pasta or a drained tin of cooked green lentils.