Zucchini, Green Bean, and Almond Pasta Salad

Ingredients:

1 1/2 pounds zucchini (2 to 3, depending on size), halved lengthwise and very thinly sliced
1/2 pound French green bean, steamed for about 5 minutes until they turn bright green and then tossed in an ice bath
1 teaspoon salt
1 1/2 ounces parmesan or pecorino romano cheese, thinly sliced on a mandoline or with a peeler
1/2 cup slivered almonds, well-toasted and cooled (300 degree oven for 7 to 10 minutes, tossing occasionally, usually works)
1/2 pound pasta of your choice (I like the extra bite of whole wheat pasta in pasta salads), cooked, drained and cooled
5 tablespoons olive oil
Juice of one lemon
Freshly ground black pepper

Further additions, if you wish: 1/2 cup crumbled feta or blue cheese (replacing parmesan), 1/4 red onion, thinly sliced (you can let this marinate in the dressing for a few minutes, to reduce its bite), 1/4 pound fresh spinach or 1/4 cup thinly slivered basil or 1 cup white beans, rinsed and drained

Directions:

Toss zucchini slices with one teaspoon salt in a large colander set over a bowl or in sink. Let drain 20 minutes. If they taste too salty to you, rinse and drain them again. Stir zucchini, green beans, parmesan, almonds and pasta together. Whisk together olive oil and lemon juice, seasoning generously with black pepper and salt to taste. Toss with salad and adjust seasonings to taste. Pack up salad and take it with you to the beach.

(Recipe adapted from: http://smittenkitchen.com)