Simple Summer Vegetable Stir-fry

It's zucchini season! Almost everyone I know has a plethora of the delicious green summer squash. Zucchini can have a bad rep; it can turn into mushy grossness if cooked improperly. But don't give up on this versatile veggie! Zucchini is high in a ton of vitamins and minerals, my favorite being potassium. Potassium helps with circulation and anxiety. So, zucchini muffins are not only healthy, but they can help you relax! For people like me who love to pack as much nutrition into each calorie as possible, zucchini offers infinite possibilities.

This time, I opted to use zucchini in a lovely summer stir-fry. It's quick, light, and perfectly seasoned. I have a love-hate relationship with stir-fry dishes. Most often, my stir-fry ends up heavy with oil or way too bland, my northern Minnesota roots take over when trying to season the dish. Not so with this stir-fry. It explodes with flavor.

I'm not sure if it was the super fresh zucchini, rainbow chard, and onions that made the dish pop or if it was the sauce that I happened to just throw together. It could have also been the nice crunch the toasted almonds added to the dish. Whatever it was, I will definitely be making this again - soon!

On another note, my co-worker gave me a bag of beautiful heirloom tomatoes from her garden! Best gift ever! So, I made this light salad with blanched green beans and a lemon vinaigrette with Thai basil. Until I get the recipe down, I'll just have to entice you with these pictures!

I also made some chickpea burgers that were disgusting, but photographed well.

For now, try the zucchini stir-fry - you won't be disappointed!

Simple Summer Vegetable Stir-fry
2 servings

8 ounces rice noodles
vegetable oil for frying
2 zucchini
8 stalks rainbow chard
1 medium onion
4 cloves garlic
3 stalks Thai basil (or about 2 tablespoons chopped)
3 splashes sherry
1 teaspoon toasted sesame oil (or to taste)
3 tablespoons slivered almonds, toasted
1 tablespoon soy sauce
1/4 teaspoon sriracha sauce (or more if you like it spicy!)
  1. Bring a pot of salted water to boil. Remove from heat and stir in the rice noodles. Let the noodles sit in the hot water for about 8-10 minutes, then drain. Rinse well and set aside.
  2. Finely chop the onion and mince the garlic. Heat some oil in a cast iron skillet over medium heat. Add the onion and garlic and saute until lightly golden and soft.
  3. Slice the zucchini into 1/8 inch thick rounds. Add the zucchini to the pan and stir to coat with the oil and spices. 
  4. De-stem the chard. Hold the stem in one hand and grasp the leaf with the other hand so that the leaf is folded in half lengthwise; the left and right edges of the leaf are flush with each other. Pull the leaf down while pulling the stem up; throw the thick part of the stem away and use the de-stemmed leaf. Chop the chard coarsely. Add to the pan with the zucchini. Stir to coat.
  5. Splash in some sherry. Stir and let the vegetables cook until the sherry has evaporated. Chop the Thai basil and add it to the pan. Sprinkle in the toasted sesame oil and stir. In a small bowl, mix the soy sauce and sriracha sauce together then pour into the pan. Stir and cook until all the liquids have been absorbed by the vegetables or evaporated.
  6. Place some noodles on a plate and top with the vegetable mixture. Sprinkle the slivered almonds on the top and enjoy!

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