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Zucchini Salad with Lemon, Herbs and Ricotta

4 Servings

35 minutes

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At Masseria Potenti, in Puglia, Italy, we tasted a memorable starter comprised of long, thin slices of fresh zucchini rolled around a lemony ricotta filling and dipped, cannoli-like, into sesame and poppy seeds. This summery salad is our deconstructed version of that dish. We seed the zucchini before slicing so the soft, spongy cores won’t release liquid that would dilute the bright, fresh flavors. A sprinkling of toasted sesame seeds and chopped pistachios adds richness along with a crisp, nutty texture to contrast against the velvety zucchini and creamy ricotta.




Don’t allow the zucchini to marinate in the lemon juice mixture for longer than about 15 minutes or the slices will begin to soften and turn limp.

35 minutes


  • 2

    teaspoons grated lemon zest, plus 2 tablespoons lemon juice

  • 2

    teaspoons minced fresh rosemary


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Linda M.
July 4, 2023
I can’t have dairy, so no ricotta for moi. I just made the dressing and tossed it on the zucchini. I didn’t have pistachios and could not find the darn sesame seeds, so I chopped & toasted some hazelnuts to toss on top. Also no mint. It is great, very fresh. I make it again with pistachios, sesame seeds & mint next time. Thanks for a yummy recipe!!
Kathy A.
July 3, 2023
Fresh and tasty
Didn't have any more ricotta. Used a bulgarian feta. I think equally nice.
John Z.

This is a start to something good. For my taste at least, it needs a little heat — a pinch of red pepper flakes in the dressing and in the nut/seed mixture might do it.

Beth M.

Wish I had read John Z's comments prior to making but really good summer salad. We made this with a simple salmon filet and it was an amazing Thursday night summer dinner. Full disclosure - I did not have rosemary and used fresh oregano instead. I also found that my chives were not perfect so I used super thinly sliced red onion - maybe 1/4 cup. I thought it would be a great Greekish flavor and it was excellent. I also flubbed and put the lemon zest in with the lemon juice. I then grated additional lemon zest for the ricotta. No noted detriment. So, with my changes - partly necessity and partly lack of following directions...I loved the dish. I normally try to cook Milk Street "as is" first before making changes but oh well and super happy with it. I will try red pepper flakes next time per John Z as I think that would be a win.

Janine W.

I made this tonight. It was really good. I did omit the mint b/c I really don't care for it. I am curious if someone has a mint substitute that they may recommend would go well with the salad.

George R.

I made the salad as is, and it was great. We have made it for friends and they all liked it and they love good food. From the looks above there are many good variations.

Nicole H.

I've made this twice now and LOVE IT as is, as did the folks I served it to! I am really not a mint person, but I have to admit, it really brings the dish together (dude). I can see how a hit of red pepper flakes would be a nice kick. It's also pretty good as leftovers the next day.