Hello people! Summer is in full swing in Montreal and I don't know about you, but I am ON FIRE. I've always been somewhat sensitive to heat, but I find that being in a city makes it....more challenging. Cement, car exhaust, lack of access to lakes, the demands of society to wear clothes, it just ain't right. To top it all off I've inherited a weird "hot foot" thing from my dad. In the middle of the night my feet often feel like they're about to burst into flames. As a result, it's not uncommon to find me with feet submerged in a bathtub of cold water at 3am.
The truth is, I'm prone to over-heating which makes me (extra) cranky, short-tempered, and generally unpleasant to be around. Philippe put his hand on my thigh during one of these bouts yesterday and I nearly slugged him. It was a gesture of affection, but felt like he was putting a hot, steamy ham on my leg. Weird, I know. According to Ayurveda, I'm Pitta Dosha, prone to be hot and fiery. The good news is, I can balance it out (or exacerbate it) with my diet and lifestyle choices. Cooling foods are my friends. Hot, oily, spicy foods, while I love them, turn me into a menace.
This bruschetta recipe combines sweet strawberries, cooling raw zucchini, and bitter greens to make a cooling meal for a summer afternoon. For more information on bitter greens and their benefits, take a look here and here.
1 3/4 pounds zucchini, green and yellow
1 pound fresh, ripe strawberries
1 small handful fresh mint leaves, some torn, some whole
1 handful bitter greens (turnip greens, beet greens, arugula, etc) chiffonade
1/3 cup fresh lemon juice
1 tsp raw honey or maple syrup
1 tablespoon olive oil
crusty, toasted, day-old bread to serve
- Use a wide peeler or a mandoline to thinly slice the zucchini. Toss with a pinch of salt and set aside in a medium bowl to soften up.
- Hull and thinly slice strawberries, add to zucchini along with mint and bitter greens.
- Whisk together vinaigrette and add to the bowl, mix well.
- Serve atop your favourite day-old, artisan bread.