I’m pretty excited to share this recipe with you! Here’s why:
June 2000: I was single in the city. (Except for my then jerky boyfriend but let’s just pretend that didn’t happen, m’kay?) My Cooking Light magazine arrived on my Los Angeles smog infested doorstep [cough], I saw this Marinated Vegetable Salad recipe and knew it was fate. Serious, dramatic, life altering fate.
2001 – 2004: The boyfriend? Gone. Whew. The recipe? I still love.
Although this is a perfect Spring and Summer recipe, I made this vegetable salad every Thanksgiving. I know it’s not very traditional, but I thought it was a perfect contrast to all the heavier, fattening foods we’d be eating. And it was always a hit with guests at any gathering.
2005 – 2007: I met The Hungry Husband♥. Marinated Vegetable Salad and I grew apart. It happens sometimes. I know – it’s like - so sad.
2008: I started missing good ol’ veggie salad. And where did I put that recipe???
Luckily, I kept every Cooking Light magazine I received in these cute Ikea magazine holders. (Yes, I have a problem.) I had planned on getting all Martha Stewart-like and was going to paint and bedazzle these babies. As you can see, they’re still as bare and plain as the day I bought them umpteen years ago.
One would think I would be able to find this recipe pretty easily in a stack of a gazillion magazines. But no.
2008 – 2013: I searched endlessly for the coveted vegetable salad recipe. Racked my brain – still nothing. Internet search kept turning up empty. I almost started losing hope. I said almost.
April 2014: Through the power of faith, the belief that dreams do come true, and many, many hours of searching during late night cookie eating escapades, I found the recipe!
[Cue: soap opera music - the kind they play when long lost loves are reunited in slow motion]
And that’s why I’m thrilled to share this with you. Now you can try this oldie but goodie recipe and grow your own obsession for it. Just don’t lose it, okay?
- 3 cups julienne-cut carrots (I used pre-cut bagged carrots but you can cut them yourself)
- 2 cups julienne-cut zucchini (you can leave skin on, if you prefer)
- 1 cup vertically sliced red onion (julienne-cut)
- ½ cup julienne-cut red bell pepper (seeded)
- ¼ cup red wine vinegar
- 2 tablespoons finely grated fresh Pecorino Romano or Parmesan cheese
- 2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1 tablespoon water
- ¼ teaspoon dried basil
- ¼ teaspoon dried oregano
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- ⅛ teaspoon ground black pepper
- Place carrots in a microwave-safe dish and cover with plastic wrap. Microwave on HIGH for 1½ minutes, or until crisp-tender. Remove from microwave immediately and remove plastic wrap. Set aside and let cool.
- Place zucchini in a microwave-safe dish and cover with plastic wrap. Microwave on HIGH for 1½ minutes, or until crisp-tender. Remove from microwave immediately and remove plastic wrap. Set aside and let cool.
- In large bowl, combine carrot, zucchini, onion, and bell pepper. Toss together.
- In small bowl, combine ingredients for dressing (vinegar through the end of the list) and whisk together.
- Pour dressing over vegetables and toss together to coat.
- Cover salad with plastic wrap and marinate in refrigerator for 2-3 hours. Toss once half-way through marinating time, if possible.
- Toss once again right before serving and serve cold.