This colourful courgette and green beans salad is the perfect side dish to serve during summer. It’s crisp, fresh and super healthy. The courgettes are raw and marinated in a mix of lemon, white vinegar and fresh herbs. The green beans are briefly boiled to keep them crunchy and green. The walnuts and goat cheese complete the salad giving extra crunchiness and flavour.
For the marinade I used fresh mint and dill but you can use basil or thyme, if you prefer. I suggest to let the courgettes soaking in the marinade for 30 minutes, but if you are not a fan of sourness you can prepare the marinade and use it just as a dressing when you serve the salad. Leaving the courgettes in the marinade though, gives them a lovely texture: they become soft but at the same time crunchy. So maybe you can try it with a small part of the courgette slices and leave the others just raw.
Tips and tricks for a beautiful salad
For this salad it’s important to keep all the vegetables crunchy and with a nice colour. To do so you have to follow some rules, as always in my recipes 😉
- Do not over boil the green beans, blanch them just for 5-8 minutes max. After draining transfer in a bowl of iced water. They will stay crisp and green.
- Slice the radishes very thinly and keep them in the fridge in another bowl of iced water.
- Put the courgette slices in a shallow dish and try to keep them covered with the marinade.
- Use a mandoline slicer to slice to have perfect slices.
I used goat cheese because it’s one of my favourite cheese and I was gifted a couple of pack of “Bettine” goat’s cheese pearls*, but this salad is perfect with feta cheese or halloumi for example. Preparing salads is always fun, you can mix ingredients as you like, using seasonal veggies or just playing with colours.
Courgette salad with green beans, radishes , goat cheese and walnuts
- green beans: 400 grams
- courgettes , medium: 2
- radishes: 5
- fresh goat's cheese* , cut into small cubes: 200 grams
- walnut kernels , chopped: 40 grams
- lemon juice: 70 grams
- white wine vinegar: 30 grams
- extra virgin olive oil: 50 grams
- fresh mint , chopped: 10 leaves
- fresh dill , chopped: 1 tsp
- salt to taste
- pepper to taste
- Prepare a big bowl of cold water with ice cubes and keep it close to the hob.Wash the green beans and snap off the ends. Bring a large pot of water to the boil, add 2 tbsp of coarse salt (like you do with the pasta) and the beans. Blanch them for about 5 to 8 minutes max. Using a pair of tongs take one beans out of the water and taste it. You want the beans crisp so do not over boil them. As soon as they are cooked, drain and put them in the bowl of iced water for 5 minutes. Then drain in a colander and set aside.
- Prepare the marinade. Whisk together lemon juice, vinegar, oil, a pinch of salt and pepper. Add the chopped herbs and mix well.
- Cut the courgettes into thin slices (about 3 mm thick) using a sharp knife or a mandoline slicer.
- Transfer them in a shallow plate and pour over the marinade. Cover and set in the fridge for 30 minutes.
- Cut the the radishes into thin almost transparent slices and to keep them crunchy soak in a bowl of iced water until you are ready to assemble the salad.
- Cut the green beans into about 3/4 cm pieces.
- Once the courgettes are ready, drain them from the marinade but reserve all the juice. Put the courgettes, green beans and radishes into a big bowl. Add the goat cheese and mix well. Sprinkle over the chopped walnuts and serve using the marinade to dress the salad or, if you prefer just drizzle some oil and season with salt to taste.
*The goat's cheese pearls I used in the recipe are great for salad. They were kindly gifted to me by "Bettine". I did not receive a compensation for using them.