Grated Summer Squash with Truffle Pecorino
A simple summer salad, with complex, earthy flavor.
This salad is a wonderful way to venture into the world of raw squash. Using the truffle version of pecorino isn’t absolutely critical, but its earthiness is a fantastic counterpoint to the brighter flavors of squash and lemon juice. For best results, use the smallest, firmest, freshest squash you can find – they’re easier to grate and taste better than the more mature ones. And because this salad is simple (almost minimalist), the quality of your olive oil really counts. [Editor’s note: recipe from Sam Mogannam’s Eat Good Food cookbook.]
4 small summer squash (green, yellow, or a mix) about 1 pound total
2-inch chunk truffle pecorino cheese
2 teaspoons freshly squeezed lemon juice, more to taste
2 teaspoons extra virgin olive oil, plus more for drizzling
Trim the squash, grate on the large holes of a box grater, and transfer to a medium bowl. Finely grate enough of the cheese to make 1/4 cup and add to the bowl. Use a vegetable peeler on the remaining chunk of cheese to make a small pile of cheese shards, and set them aside.
Drizzle the lemon juice and olive oil over the squash, add a few large pinches of salt, and mix well. Taste and add more lemon juice or salt as needed. Transfer to a serving bowl, drizzle with a little more olive oil, and sprinkle the cheese shards over the top of the salad.
Tip: Because squash has so much water, it starts to wilt and release liquid as soon as it comes into the contact with salt. So for best results, serve this salad within minutes of making it.