New Twist on an Olfactory

 

I think the olfactory is the most potent memory inducing of all the senses.  In the kitchen I can combine just a few ingredients for the sake of time travel.  Thin slices of zucchini layered carefully with whole mint leaves, a sprinkle of sea salt and a generous drizzle of olive oil is just the kind of dish to make when you are missing your grandmother in the last months of summer.

Baked Zucchini with Mint & Rictotta Salata

4 medium sized zucchini
1 1/2 cups plain bread crumbs
1/2 cup pignola nuts
1/2 cup olive oil (plus more for drizzling)
2 tblsp dried oregano
1 cup whole mint leaves
1/4 pound ricotta salata
salt and pepper to taste

In a food processor combine the bread crumbs and pignola nuts, add the oregano, salt and pepper.   Pulse gently while streaming in the olive oil until all ingredients are incorporated.  If the breadcrumb mixture appears too oily simply add more crumbs, too dry more oil.  Pat mixture into the bottom of a low casserole or pie pan and toast in the oven at 300 degrees for approximately 10 minutes.

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