This zucchini and cucumber noodle salad is officially the first recipe posted to my blog that was prepared & photographed in my new kitchen! I know I’m not alone when I say that moving can be tremendously physically and mentally draining for me. But we are so happy to be settled in here at our new place! We had lived near the college campus where J is doing his graduate program, but the whole college vibe was increasingly not a great fit for us, nor was it convenient for my commute. So we finally got our butts in gear and found something that suited us a little better. Still in Baltimore, just a different neighborhood (with several vegan-friendly restaurants!)
The most exciting part, of course, is that we’re done with apartment living (for now)… we have a rowhouse! With a MUCH bigger kitchen, a garden, and a fenced in backyard area with a grill (thank you, landlord for leaving the grill for us!) FYI, rowhouses are a classic architectural feature of Baltimore. They are single-family homes that are completely attached to each other. I think they are one of my favorite things about this city. (You can learn more about rowhouses here if you’re interested.) I think the type we are living in is either a ‘daylight rowhouse’ or a ‘porchfront house’. The sort of shared front porches mean we actually interact with our neighbors! Hopefully they enjoy vegan baked goods 🙂
So, after moving, I was excited to get back to cooking from the CSA. I am totally backlogged right now because we didn’t do much cooking for nearly an entire week while we dealt with all of the logistics and got our kitchen unpacked. Here’s what we got last week:
Radishes with greens
Sugar snap peas
Purslane (an edible weed with a deliciously weird salty flavor)
Yellow “cheddar” cauliflower (hey, I didn’t name it)
And this past Saturday we got:
Kohlrabi with greens
Enough bell peppers to fill a bucket (counts for 2 items)
Today’s recipe is another way to incorporate sweet, juicy summer peaches into a savory dish, and to make a meal without having to turn on the oven or stove! I used my vegetable spiralizer to make noodles out of cucumbers and zucchini. (Below the recipe are tips for doing this without a spiralizer.) I tossed in fresh sliced peaches, onions, and bell pepper strips. It took all of 2 minutes to whisk together this super easy peanut dressing and sprinkle sesame seeds to finish. To make this a more filling meal, I added some cooked mung beans when I packed up my lunch to bring to work.
Mixing together zucchini and cucumber is the perfect compromise. Raw zucchini noodles have a really nice texture, but taste like nothing. Cucumber noodles have that crisp, refreshing flavor, but a little softer texture. Together they have everything you need for a killer raw “noodle” salad. With bell peppers and peaches in their prime right now, every bite is bursting with juicy deliciousness. I am already craving this again.
Zucchini and Cucumber Noodle Salad with Peanut Sauce and Fresh Peaches
For the instant peanut sauce:
- 2 tbsp creamy natural peanut butter (only peanuts)
- 1/2 tbsp coconut sugar (or brown sugar; plus more to taste)
- 1/2 tbsp rice wine vinegar
- 2 tsp tamari (or soy sauce)
- 1/2 tbsp sriracha
- 1 tbsp water
For the zucchini and cucumber noodle salad:
- 2 medium zucchini cut into noodles using a spiralizer
- 2 medium cucumbers cut into noodles using a spiralizer
- 1 large bell pepper cut into thin strips
- 1 large fresh peach thinly sliced (large slices in the pictures are for decoration!)
- 1/4 medium white onion thinly sliced
- instant peanut sauce (see above)
- sesame seeds and green onions for garnish
For the instant peanut sauce:
Whisk together the peanut butter, coconut sugar, rice wine vinegar, tamari, and sriracha until a smooth paste forms. Add more sugar if desired. Add the water and whisk in until the dressing is smooth.
For the salad:
Sprinkle the spiralized zucchini and cucumbers generously with salt, and set in a colander to drain off some of the liquid, for 10 minutes or longer.
Rinse off the salt from the noodles and gently pat dry with a towel. Gently toss together with the bell pepper, peach, and onion.
Fold in the peanut sauce. Serve immediately, garnished with sesame seeds and green onions if desired. For saving leftovers, keep the sauce and noodles separate until just before eating them.
I was lucky enough to receive my spiralizer as a gift. But I can completely understand not wanting to purchase a (sorta) single-function kitchen tool. I will say that I love the spiralizer and use it almost weekly. But I found a couple of ways to make this zucchini cucumber noodle salad without that particular gadget.
Oh She Glows shares that you can use a julienne peeler to make “noodle” strips.
Reviving Traditions shows how to make noodles with the shredder Kitchenaid attachment.
Top with Cinnamon discovered zucchini noodles made with a cheese grater. (Don’t toss that thing when you go vegan!!)
P.S… I love eggplant, but I have had a really bad success rate with preparing it in my own kitchen. If you have any awesome Japanese eggplant recipes, I would love to hear what they are! Have a great week!
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