This recipe is remarkably filling for being meatless. Use a veggie-based cheese and it becomes vegan. It is crunchy, soft, savory, and 100% delicious. I adapted this recipe from the Wall Street Journal’s Saturday cooking section. It has a few more ingredients that I’d like to use but the recipe is beautiful, interesting, and well worth the effort.


  • 1/3 cup plus 2 tablespoons olive oil, plus more for drizzling
  • 1 large onion, diced
  • 4 teaspoons turmeric
  • 2 teaspoons cumin powder
  • 1 teaspoon red pepper flakes
  • 1/3 cup lemon juice
  • 1/2 cup water
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 4 medium zucchini, halved lengthwise
  • 1 cup crumbled feta
  • 1/2 cup toasted sliced almonds or toasted cashews
  • 1/4 cup torn basil leaves


  1. Set broiler to high.
  2. Heat 2 tablespoons oil in a medium sauté pan over medium-low heat. Add onions and sauté until translucent and soft, about 4 minutes. Add turmeric and sauté until fragrant, 1-2 minutes more. Add cumin and pepper flakes, and sauté until fragrant, 1-2 minutes more.
  3. Pour in lemon juice and water. Cover and let mixture simmer until thickened, about 5 minutes. Uncover and cook until mixture thickens about 2-3 minutes more. Add splashes of water if onions look dry or begin to brown too quickly.
  4. In a large skillet, heat 1/3 cup olive oil over medium heat. Salt and pepper zucchini on both sides. Lay zucchini into hot oil, cut-sides down, and fry until golden brown, 2-4 minutes. Flip and fry until reverse sides are golden, about 2 minutes more. Set zucchini aside on a sheet pan, covered with parchment.
  5. Spread onion mixture over fried zucchini halves and top with feta. Broil zucchini until cheese browns in spots, about 2 minutes.
  6. Garnish with toasted nuts, a drizzle of olive oil, and basil.