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Saturday, November 23, 2013

Recipe: Spaghetti with Zucchini and Walnuts

Gluten Free Spaghetti with Zucchini, Walnuts and Parmesan Cheese

It's funny how our tastes change as we get older. When I was younger, I hated zucchinis. You see, SIL Mama didn't know how to cook zucchini right so I only knew of zucchini as a yucky mushy mess. 

Once I started cooking, I began to experiment with different foods - and zucchini was one of those foods. I started to cook it differently and I fell in love. I turned from the girl who wouldn't touch zucchini with a 10 foot pole, to a girl who craves zucchini. 

This Spaghetti with Zucchini and Walnuts is a dish that even the strictest zucchini hater will love - the zucchini is sliced into fine pasta like strands and mixed through the pasta. It's softened but still has a little bit of bite - just like al dente pasta. 

Jesse can't figure out how I manage to put these combinations together, but they're just things that sound right in my head. I know what each of the individual foods taste like in my head so I come up with different combinations I think will work and test them out. This week, the combinations have been successful - from zucchini walnut spaghetti with parmesan cheese to a haloumi and date salad (recipe soon) to quinoa stuffed portobello mushrooms.

It's all about playing around with the foods you love and finding what works! But now, I want to give you the recipe to try this delicious combination yourself!

Healthy Low Fat Spaghetti with Zucchini, Walnuts and Parmesan Cheese

Spaghetti with Zucchini and Walnuts  
serves 1, easily multiplied for a couple or a crowd!
gluten free, low fat, clean eating friendly, sugar free 

1 serve cooked spaghetti, or your favourite pasta*
1 small zucchini, thinly sliced like spaghetti**
~2 tbsp walnuts (I used raw unsalted walnuts) 
1 small clove of garlic, crushed
~2 tbsp parmesan cheese
A few leaves of fresh basil and parsley 
Salt and pepper to taste
Optional: ~1 tsp butter/margarine/butter spread (we use this spread)

When your spaghetti is just about finished cooking (about 1 minute to go) throw in your zucchini and allow it to soften slightly. Strain and rinse the pasta and zucchini. 
In a small saucepan, cook your garlic with the herbs for about 1-2 minutes. 
Add in your walnuts and pasta mixture, stirring to coat with the garlic mixture. 
Add in your parmesan cheese and butter (if using), seasoning with salt and pepper to taste. 
Allow to warm through and serve immediately!

*I would have used fettucine to go with the thicker strands of zucchini but we were all out. We like to use Sam Mills Pasta D'oro (which is available at Woolworths) 
**As well as slicing, you can use a mandolin or box grater to get the spaghetti like strands - or you can use a spiraliser if you're lucky enough to have one! I also use a vegetable peeler if I want to create really thin ribbons.

If  you don't want to use the butter, leave it out - it's not really necessary, it just helps everything to stick together and gives a little bit more flavour and better mouthfeel.

But tell me, what food did you hate as a child but love now? 
I always hated mushrooms but now I love them - but it was the same problem, I didn't like how my Mum cooked mushrooms so I based my judgement off that. 

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  1. Very interesting combo! I love how light it is, without heavy sauces like most zucchini pastas out there! I use walnuts in everything, minus pasta, but loving that idea!

    1. It was so good, Kelly! I've made it quite a few times since the first time I made it so it's definitely a keeper :)


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