Tuesday, 7 July 2015

Real Fast Food: Puttanesca with Zucchini Noodles


I'm not the first to blog this type of recipe. I'm not even in the top million. But I have to do it. This "pasta" tastes fantastic and it literally takes minutes to throw together the sauce and the zucchini noodles.

The zucchini noodles are pure 100% zucchini so you are ramping up your veggie intake. There are a number of devices you can buy to cut the zucchini into thin strips.  I just bought a "vegetable spirallizer" for $17 from a kitchen specialty shop. It's fantastic - you  insert the zucchini (or other firm vegetable) into the device and then turn it like a pencil sharpener. Presto! Noodles. It literally takes about 2 minutes.



The Spirallizer produces zucchini noodles.
The sauce is mostly made from canned or jarred foods so it's excellent on those nights when you are relying on your pantry for a healthy but satisfying meal. I make my Dad's version of Puttanesca sauce. There are many different recipes for this famous dish. I'm a fan of the Italian tuna Rio Mare. You can buy this in packages of four from Costco Peterborough.

Rio Mare from Costco Peterborough.
Puttanesca Sauce

2 tsp of olive oil
2-3 garlic cloves crushed and chopped
1 tsp dried red chilli peppers
1 can of anchovies (oil reserved)
1 large can of plum tomatoes diced
1 can of tomato paste
2 tbsp capers
1 can of good quality chunky tuna
Grated rind of one lemon
10 kalamata olives pitted and halved
Handful of basil leaves if you have them
Fresh Parmesan grated for serving

Warm olive oil in a large frying pan or saucepan. Add garlic, anchovies, and chilli peppers and cook just until anchovies start to fall apart and garlic is golden. Add tomatoes, paste, capers, lemon rind, olives and basil. Allow to simmer for a few minutes then add tuna. Continue to simmer while you make the zucchini.

Zucchini Noodles

4 zucchini - mix of green and yellow.

Slice zucchini into spaghetti sized strips by any of the methods described above. Heat water in a saucepan and when boiling add salt and zucchini. Only allow the zucchini to blanche for about 1 to 1.5 minutes then drain into colander and toss until water is drained and noodles are dry. Alternative method: some people like to pan fry the zucchini in a bit of butter, olive oil, or lemon juice. Just make sure that you flash fry them for about a minute or two. Regardless of which method you use you want the zucchini al dente not mushy.

Serve zucchini noodles in a bowl with big spoonfuls of sauce and topped with freshly grated Parmesan. Makes 4 smaller servings or 2-3 large.


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3 comments:

Steve said...

Well whaddya know cous - the perfect solution for my cougette/zucchini/marrow overload (still may chop some up and put it in the freezer).

Yes, I'm back (after 3 years on meat). Vege forever :)

Samantha Dalby said...

You are a smart vegetarian Steve so I am sure you will have excellent nutrition. There are some easy veggie adaptations for this recipe which I am sure you have already thoughts of. Take out the fish and use beans or tofu instead. Get that salty zap from the olives. It's all good stuff!

Rose Maria said...
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