Frida Kahlo’s Zucchini Salad (Ensalada de Calabacín)

  • Serves

    serves 6-8


In the 1930s, artists Diego Rivera and Frida Kahlo often hosted festive dinner parties—which Frida called "día de los manteles largos," the days of the long tablecloth—at their Mexico City home. The recipe for this simple Mexican salad of grilled zucchini, avocado, and salty, crumbled añjeo cheese was served at a dinner party attended by Mexican composer Carlos Chávez and Nelson Rockefeller. It comes from Frida's Fiestas by Guadalupe Rivera and Marie-Pierre Cole (Clarkson Potter, 1994). This recipe appeared in our November 2014 issue with the story The Art of the Meal.


  • 8 tbsp. olive oil
  • 3 tbsp. red wine vinegar
  • 1 tsp. kosher salt, plus more
  • ½ tsp. sugar
  • 6 small zucchini, sliced
  • 2 ripe avocados, sliced
  • 3 oz. crumbled queso añejo or parmesan
  • 2 tbsp. cilantro, roughly chopped


Step 1

Shake 6 tbsp. olive oil, vinegar, salt, and sugar in a glass jar until emulsified; set aside. Heat 2 tbsp. olive oil in a 12" skillet over medium-high; cook zucchini until golden, 10–12 minutes. Let cool slightly and overlap on a serving platter with avocados. Sprinkle with salt and drizzle with the vinaigrette; garnish with queso añejo or parmesan and cilantro.

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