Sunday, January 28, 2018

De-Carbing Spaghetti

They Do What With Zucchini?

     I've been seeing them in the produce section at our corner grocer's for a few months now: long, skinny strips of carrot, yellow squash or zucchini.  They're meant to be a low-carbohydrate replacement for pasta, but really, now -- can that be any good?

     Finally, I had to try.  Tam's doing low-carb and I didn't want to give up on the occasional treat of a spaghetti dinner.  Eggs Pomodoro is wonderful, but sometimes you'd like a change, no?

     So I bought the stuff.  Just in case, I made Bobbi's Overkill Sauce.  It starts with a half-pound each of ground sirloin and sweet Italian sausage, mostly cooked and drained, then finished with a nice onion and plenty of fresh mushrooms, to which I add a bottle of whatever spaghetti sauce looks appealing. Newman's "Sockarooni" kitchen-sink version is surprising tasty, even compared to the high-end gourmet stuff, but use whatever you like.  The end result stands on its own.

     There are several ways to cook vegetable "noodles," none of which are much like boiling pasta in salt water.  I opted to saute it for a few minutes; a non-stick skillet and a half-teaspoon of olive oil ensured it wouldn't stick or clump.  After five minutes, it was indeed al dente and with the sauce ladled over, it looked like the real deal.

     It's good!  The taste is not quite the same as traditional spaghetti.  It may be better -- zucchini can become bitter in cooking but the quickly sauteed version has none of that, just a nice, mild vegetable richness that complements the sauce.   Mouthfeel is like good spaghetti, and not at all slimy the way cheap pasta can be.

     Tam and I are not going to have to give up spaghetti.

     If you've been looking at the stuff, wondering, give it a try.


John Peddie (Toronto) said...

By finding a use for zucchini,you have just entered cuisine's Hall of Fame.

Sdv1949 said...

My wife and I have been using various squashes to sub for pasta for about three years. Zucchini for spaghetti, spaghetti squash for scampi, and butternut sliced thin for lasagna. It's really tasty.

Carteach said...

Zuch and Carrots, zoodled, and then simmered for just a few moments in a sauce pan with chicken stock. Nom Nom Nom.

Ruth said...

I always have so much zucchini from the garden.....those "spirilizer" vegi cutter things keep catching my eye. Maybe I'll have to buy some of the pre-done zucchini "pasta" to try the concept and go from there.

jetfxr69 said...

I have wondered about those, and Spaghetti is/was my kryptonite on low-carb.

So, I shall have to break out some of these "noodles" and give them a shot!

OldTexan said...

My wife brought some of that zucchini stuff home from the grocery store two weeks ago and I asked what the hell it was and why did we have that instead of regular zucchini which I cut into planks and grill which are kind of good. She laughed at me a bit, as usual and said we should try the veggie noodle things and see if they were any good.

I do all of the cooking and I went online and read how to cook, as you did with olive oil in a non stick pan and they were great. We bought an inexpensive gadget this week which makes ribbon strips out of vegetables but not the neat round things we had the week before so now I am in the process of finding the proper equipment to make zucchini pasta thingys. Roberta, you are right this is a great way to cook low carb.

Rob K said...

My wife bought a zoodler, we like it so much. She started with a cheap one to try making them a few times to see if we liked them, then she moved up to a much nicer one. Highly recommended!

Fuzzy Curmudgeon said...

Those would probably go well with my wife’s turkey meatballs.

Monty James said...

Steak Diavolo. If you don't feel like making the Fra Diavolo sauce, you can just ladle your regular old pasta sauce on there. Because, you know, steak.

Phssthpok said...

This post is timely. I too am doing the 'Keto' thing, and decided to try the below dish, but substituting roasted turkey deli meat for the lasagna noodles. 'Tis nom-a-licious!

I bring this up because the Alfredo sauce was spot-on and SO simple that I was lamenting not being able to use it over pasta at a later time. This hopefully* resolves that issue. I do likes me some shrimp fettuccine Alfredo.

*I say 'hopefully' as i'm not generally a fan of squashes in general, though I have come to 'tolerate' zucchini in my advanced years.

Jerry said...

Zucchini? I slice them thin on the mandolin, spray with olive oil & salt then run them through the dehydrator.