In summer, Istanbul's Jews used to abandon the city for the Princess Isles (many still do). Most of these islands allow no cars; only bicycles and horse drawn wagons. When the first zucchini of the season is ready at the beginning of the summer, and long before the plums of August are ripe and are still green on the trees, this tasty dish—comprised not so much of the zucchini itself but of its peel--appears in countless Turkish Jewish homes. With zucchini available all year round, one can substitute the plums with the juice of half a large lemon.
- 1.5 kg zucchini
- 1 small cup of olive oil
- ¼ tablespoon of tomato paste
- 1 cube of sugar
- 5-6 sour green plums or juice from half a lemon a few sprigs of fresh dill
First slice off the peel from the zucchini in long, thick (1/4 inch) slices. Then cut them in 1 inch squares (see picture).
Lighly cook the tomato paste in the oil for a few minutes. Add the zucchini peel, lemon juice (or plums), sugar, salt and enough water to cover. Cook over a small flame until all the water is gone. Cover and refrigerate. Serve cold with a sprinkling of fresh dill.