This has been one hot summer. I think we’re on our third or fourth heat wave right now, and last year I don’t even remember having one. Usually by August it starts to cool off a bit, especially here on the island, but currently it is 90 degrees and sweltering.
On days like this, I cannot fathom eating anything that requires much fuss, let alone anything that requires actual cooking. This shaved summer squash salad with Thai basil and peanuts is spicy and tangy and everything you want to be eating during a heat wave. It’s really light and refreshing, but somehow still manages to fill you up. The raw, shaved squash is tender and delicate, but also has a meatiness to it, and when paired with the crunchy peanuts, it’s super satisfying.
Bonus! Since this salad is so low in calories, you can enjoy a big scoop(s) of ice cream afterwards completely guilt free. And let’s face it, ice cream during a heat wave is pretty much mandatory.
One Year Ago: Blueberry Peach Crostata
- 2 tablespoons sugar
- 2 tablespoons fish sauce
- 2 tablespoons freshly squeezed lime juice
- 1 small shallot, thinly sliced
- 1 small jalapeno chile, thinly sliced (remove seeds and use less if sensitive to heat)
- 2 small-medium zucchini or summer squash
- 1 small bunch Thai basil, roughly chopped (about 1/4 cup)
- 1/4 cup roasted peanuts, finely chopped
- In a large bowl, whisk together the sugar, fish sauce and lime juice until the sugar is dissolved. Add the shallot and jalapeño, mix together, then set aside.
- Use a vegetable peeler to shave the zucchini and squash into long thin ribbons. Shave around the outside of the squash and stop once you get down to the seedy middle part, as it just doesn't shave up as nicely. Transfer the shaved squash to the bowl, along with the Thai basil, and use your hands to mix it up until each ribbon is throughly coated.
- Transfer to a serving bowl and top with the chopped peanuts. Serve immediately.