Dinner Tonight: Zucchini, Pine Nut, and Golden Raisin Salad Recipe

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Dinner Tonight: Zucchini, Pine Nut, and Golden Raisin Salad Recipe

It’s amazing what a handful of pine nuts can do to a recipe. Even these sliced zucchini sautéed in olive oil magically changed in my skillet from out-of-season blandness to a subtle, nutty satisfaction. And while the pine nuts had me looking the other way, the recipe switched out regular raisins for golden ones, which, though only subtly different on the palate (perhaps a little less sweet and more tangy), are more harmonious for the palette of the dish.

Cloves of garlic add some savory notes and lemon juice shoots through it with zest, creating one of the simplest dishes in Tamasin Day-Lewis’s Good Tempered Food, a cookbook full of recipes that, though they’re mostly too complicated for Dinner Tonight, are inspiring otherwise. This 10-minute side would be perfect with a fillet of fish (drizzle it with lemon juice to marry the flavors), with roast chicken, or even tossed with pasta. I’m sure it would taste great cold the next day. Not that I’d know—my girlfriend and I voraciously ate it all by itself on a long, empty Sunday afternoon.


  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 3 medium zucchini, sliced into rounds
  • 2 cloves garlic, peeled and finely chopped
  • Small handful golden raisins
  • Small handful pine nuts
  • Juice of 1/4 lemon, or more to taste
  • Sea salt and freshly cracked black pepper


  1. 1.

    Heat the olive oil in a heavy-bottomed skillet (such as cast iron) over medium heat, and add the zucchini once the oil is hot, but not smoking. Saute, stirring, until the zucchini have begun to soften, about 5 minutes.

  2. 2.

    Add the garlic, pine nuts, raisins, and plenty of salt and black pepper. Continue cooking until the pine nuts begin to brown a bit and the garlic has softened, about 2 to 3 minutes. Add the lemon juice to taste, and stir well. Transfer to a plate for serving. Though the recipe doesn’t call for it, I would finish it with a drizzle of good olive oil.