Courgettes Carpaccio with Citrus Olive Oil

I ate the last courgettes from my garden last night. Lovingly wrapped in newspaper, and lined up like nuclear warheads in my cellar since the summer, they were delicious and a fond memory of warm days.

My second season in the vegetable garden here at The Hungry Cyclist Lodge has been a success. Terroir is the watch word here in Burgundy, and mine seems to be good. Everything I planted has grown and it has been a pleasure to serve guests cycling-picnics made with fresh produce the gardens.

With a glut of courgettes, a recipe I used time and time again this summer was for courgette carpaccio. Simple and quick to prepare it is an ideal dish for a light lunch during a hot days cycling in Burgundy.

  • 150 grams of dry goats cheese (I like to use a Chèvre from Pierre Longue in Morvan)
  • three medium courgettes
  • Pinch of smoked paprika
  • A small bunch of parsley chopped.
  • one bunch of fresh parsley
  • good olive oil
  • two tablespoons chardonnay vinegar.
  • one lemon
  • large handful of toasted pine nuts
  • one garlic clove, crushed
  • one teaspoon of local honey
  • salt & pepper to taste

1. Put dressing ingredients into a blender and blend until ingredients are combined, but not pureed. You want to still see green flecks. Taste and adjust seasonings to your taste.

2. Using a mandolin or patience and a sharp knife, shave courgettes lengthways into thin ribbons.

3.In a large bowel mix the sliver through with your fingers, a glug of olive oil and the juice of the remaining half lemon.

4. Place the courgette ribbons loosely on a platter, drizzle with vinaigrette and garnish with the toasted pine nuts and the grated goat's cheese. Serve chilled and enjoy with a crisp glass of Rully.