Marinated Zucchini and Asparagus with Stracciatella and Roasted Chicken Thighs

We love the combination of the tangy marinade, sweet roasted vegetables, creamy stracciatella, fresh rocket, and crunchy walnuts. When you combine all these elements, you know the salad is going to be good.

Meal Prep

Breakdown

  • Preheat the oven to 200 degrees fan bake.
  • Marinate chicken thighs.
  • Prepare vegetables while the oven is heating up.
  • Cook the chicken thighs.
  • Cook zucchini.
  • Add asparagus to the zucchini during the last 5 minutes in the oven.
  • Assemble the salad.
  • Serve alongside the chicken thighs.

Tips

  • Look for small, firm, bright green zucchinis. Smaller zucchini are less bitter, have softer seeds, and thinner skins. Store them in the fridge.
  • If you have a BBQ you can grill the vegetables instead of roasting them.
  • Layering the salad allows each component to be evenly distributed, meaning each mouthful will have a bit of everything.

Meal prep - if you followed the meal prep guide you would have already pre-made your chicken marinade and cut the zucchini and asparagus.

This recipe serves four, if you're cooking for two simply half the recipe. If you are using stracciatella you can either have a super creamy salad and use it all, or it will last for 5 days in the fridge. You can use it in a tomato salad, top pizzas or pastas.

INGREDIENTSIngredients

Oregano Roasted Chicken Thighs

  • 600g chicken thighs
  • 2 tsp dried oregano (or 2 Tbsp fresh, finely chopped)
  • 1 lemon (juice and zest)
  • 1 Tbsp honey
  • 3 garlic cloves (crushed)
  • 1 Tbsp olive oil
  • Salt and pepper

Salad

  • 3 zucchini (cut in half lengthways then into three)
  • 1 bunch asparagus (cut into bite-sized pieces)
  • 120g rocket (1 bag)
  • 250g stracciatella
  • ¼ cup mint (finely chopped)
  • ¼ cup walnuts (roasted and roughly chopped)
  • 1 Tbsp olive oil + extra for roast the vegetables
  • 1 Tbsp red wine vinegar
  • Salt and pepper
METHODMethod
  1. Preheat the oven to 200 degrees fan bake.

  2. In an ovenproof dish add oregano, lemon juice and zest, honey, garlic, olive oil, salt and pepper; mix to combine. Add the chicken thighs and toss well to coat them in the marinade. Allow to marinate for 15 minute while the oven heats up. Pop in the oven to cook for 30-40 minutes until golden brown and cooked through.
  3. On a baking tray add the zucchini, drizzle with olive oil and season with salt and pepper. Pop in the oven for 20-25 minutes until golden brown. During the last 5 minutes add the asparagus to the baking tray with a little more olive oil if needed.

  4. Remove the vegetables from the oven and pop in a medium sized bowl, drizzle over 1 Tbsp of olive oil and red wine vinegar; toss through mint and crushed garlic.

  5. Allow too cool for a few minutes while the chicken is still cooking.

  6. Once the vegetables have cooled slightly you can assemble the salad. Start with spreading your stracciatella on the base of a plate or platter followed by ½ the rocket,  ½ the marinated vegetables, and ½ walnuts, then repeat. Serve alongside the chicken thighs.
VARIATIONS

Vegetables

  • Roasted eggplant or broccoli would also work well.
  • Swap out the rocket for baby spinach.
  • Swap out the mint for fresh parsley.

Protein

  • For a vegetarian option omit the chicken and add 400g tin of brown lentils (rinsed and drained) to the marinated vegetable mix.

Other

Here are some options if you can’t get your hands on stracciatella

  • Burrata works just as well; you may just need to pull apart the hard mozzarella casing so the cheese can be distributed across the plate.
  • Swap for good quality, fresh mozzarella (roughly torn).
  • Swap for ricotta, simply mix the zest of half a lemon into a small bowl, with ½ cup or 125g of ricotta and 1 Tbsp of olive oil; season with salt.
  • It's also tasty topped with feta or goat's feta.