Baby Summer Courgettes

BBQ season is in full swing and this is my ideal partner to serve alongside it. Quick, fresh and made beautiful with the colours of summer.

I really like the herbal combination of mint, oregano and peppery nasturtium with the pink peppercorns here, but you can use any soft fresh herbs you like. Don’t worry if you don’t have nasturtiums – they just add a nice pepperiness to the oil with the slightly lemony pink peppercorns so its worth trying them out if you can find them.

Feel free to use larger courgettes if you can’t get hold of baby ones – just consider slicing in thirds lengthways and once across to make shorter batons if they are very large.


Small courgettes / summer squash
Extra virgin olive oil
Salt and pepper
Edible flowers / flowering herbs to decorate the plate (I used nasturtium leaves and red and yellow flowers and blue borage flowers)

Pink peppercorn oil ingredients:

A couple of branches of fresh oregano
One large sprig of fresh mint
3-4 large nasturtium leaves
1/2 tsp pink peppercorns
1/2 clove of garlic
Extra virgin olive oil
Salt and pepper


– Carefully wash and slice your courgettes and any flowers in half through the root

– Get a large heavy based frying pan with a lid onto a medium/high heat and drizzle with olive oil and salt and pepper

– Place the courgette halves/slices cut side down in the pan and fry with the lid on till they are nicely caramelised and starting to soften

– Flip the pieces over and caramelise the other side – the courgettes should be nicely soft to the point of a knife

– Keep warm and set aside

– While that’s happening, pre-heat the oven to 160C fan (180C) and line a flat baking sheet with parchment

– Arrange your washed kale leaves on the sheet and massage in a little olive oil, salt and pepper

– Cook for five minutes and then check and flip them over and cook for a few minutes more if necessary – they should be nice and crisp but still retain some of their green colour

– Meanwhile, make your oil by placing your herb leaves half a clove of garlic and some seasoning into a pestle and mortar and giving it all a good bash to create a green paste

– Next throw in your pink peppercorns and a big glug of olive oil and continue to muddle it all together to crack the pink peppercorns a little

– Choose a nice large flat serving plate and start to arrange your courgette and kale pieces in as much of a single layer as is possible

– Drizzle the courgettes and the plate with dots of the pink peppercorn oil and arrange any small nasturtium leaves and flowers that you like over the top

– Serve at room temperature – lovely as a warm salad to accompany a BBQ


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