Making Zoodles Pasta with my new Spiralizer

By | September 17, 2015

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Close your eyes for a moment after you read this paragraph andimagine a point far far away in the future when you are as old in age as you’d think you’d live to be, how about a 100-years-old? Everything is in the hands of god of course, but let’s imagine that somehow you did live to join the centenarian club. How do you think you will feel, health-wise, if Allah granted you to live that long? White hair and lots of wrinkles of course yes that’s a given, but what about your health?

I’m not trying to preach or anything, excuse me if this is coming across as a form of self-righteous preaching, but bear with me as I’m trying to make a humble point here. I’d love it if I could live forever but we can all agree that’s not possible so the next best thing is to hope and live for as long as humanely possible in this day and age and, this is very important, as healthy as possible. You cannot control what life throws at you, but you can aim towards keeping as healthy as possible and that’s why these days I’m cutting out a lot of things out of my life (food, negativity, etc.) and trying to find healthier alternatives to beloved dishes I’ve known and grown up with and since my number one favourite dish of all time is Spaghetti Pomodoro I wanted to experience a “healthier” alternative to it. Enter the Zoodles!

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I think it was a couple of years back when people started to go crazy for Zoodles, which are spaghetti-like strings of finely cut zucchinis. I think I’ve seen them in one farmer’s market and in one too many instagram posts although I’m yet to come across them in a local restaurant. In my quest of going healthy, I invested in a “Vegetable Spiralizer” that I got from Lakeland. I saw it in the UK first but I thought why lung it all the way back to Kuwait when we have a Lakeland in Marina Mall and when I was back in Kuwait I went to Marina Mall and there it was. Very straightforward to use and comes with three different razor attachments for three difference spiral thickness cuts.

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Next I needed zucchinis and for that I opted to choose the dark green ones sold in Sultan Centers rather than the small light green ones we usually find in local Co-ops. I read somewhere online that you should make your Zucchini pieces as straight as possible even if you have to cut them and so I did. One long Zucchini is enough for one portion by the way.

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Simply attach each piece and whirl away!

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You’ll be surprised at how neat the strings are! Don’t use the thinnest cutter, use the thick one as the strings of Zucchini tend to shrink after being cooked.

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By the time I was done with the single Zucchini, my dish was overflowing with Zoodles!

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I was also left with these weird end pieces, I chopped them up and added them to the tomato sauce I already made on the stove. The entire process of making the Zoodles took less than five minutes if you count washing and cutting up the Zucchini!

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Now there is a debate amongst foodies on how to proceed with the Zoodles. Some people will eat them as-is, just mixing them with the sauce and calling it a day. I find the zoodles too crunchy and too raw for my taste that way. Others recommend them cooked, which I prefer, but how to cook them also differs. Apparently the way to make sure they are nicely cooked is to sprinkle them with a generous helping of sauce and leave them in a bowl for 15 minutes before thoroughly washing them and giving them a 1-2 minutes max stir in a pan. When you first cook them, if you do not salt them first, you’ll find out they emit quite an amount of water which can and will ruin the texture of your dish, rendering it too runny! I say salt them first.

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My tomato sauce was already done and waiting on the stove, the Zoodles were seasoned with salt, pepper, oregano, and went for a quick 1-2 minutes dry-frying on my non-stick pan.

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Then while they still looked firm I dropped them in my sauce, mixing for another minute or so.

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10 minutes after I spun that Spiralizer handle, and I had this dish on my table waiting for me.

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I served it with a side of a side of spinach, cherry tomatoes, and baby mozzarella salad. The dish is as light and vegetarian as it could get!

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How does it look?

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Stringy! The zoodles held up their shape nicely!

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How did they taste? Quite good actually, I didn’t expect them to be that good! Almost like spaghetti!

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How did they really taste? I’m going to be frank with you, I had two problems with the zoodles pomodoro dish. The first one is with the strands of zoodles that had the zucchini skin on them, they had a more crunchier texture than the skinned ones and felt a bit weird. I could overcome this by simply skinning my zucchini and texture-wise it will not feel that different from a spaghetti.

However, I do have one problem I cannot seem to avoid, the zoodles smelled strongly of, well, zucchinis! Real pasta, when boiled, give out a homey feel that make butterflies fly in my stomach. Zoodles have this zucchini stench that is too strong and I couldn’t overcome with the sauce. If you cannot stand the smell of zucchinis then you won’t enjoy this dish especially if you haven’t tried them before. Alas, I could overcome the zucchini smell if it meant I could have spaghetti pomodoro twice a day, every day, wheat-free.

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While we are on the subject of Zoodles, I’ve had the chance to shoot a couple of pictures for another Chinese style noodles thing I made with pumpkins and carrots! Those were peeled, salted, then lightly tossed around with veggies, soya sauce, and sesame seeds in a wok! They were good and the pumpkins and carrots emitted no smells :)

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Now why am I saying this is healthier? Well, we are swapping something manufactured for something natural. We are swapping wheat with vegetables, so its gluten free and you can eat as much as you want for fraction of the calories if, you are like me, have an insatiable appetite for pasta!

By the way I’ve been experimenting with the spiralizer and every time I am more than satisfied with my veggies! I’ve spiralled carrots, beetroots, cucumbers, pumpkins, potatoes, and made salads and baked dishes and each and every time I  thoroughly enjoyed my dish! You know how sometimes you buy a kitchen gadget at you’d use it once or twice only then keep it on a shelf to gather dust? Its not the case with this one, and in light of that I’m thinking of composing another post about my top ten favourite kitchen gadgets that actually work! What do you think?

Have you tried the Zoodles before? Do you have any tips/recommendations on how to prepare or cook them? What is your favourite recipe?


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