A surprisingly satisfying substitution for pasta | Food | Pittsburgh | Pittsburgh City Paper

A surprisingly satisfying substitution for pasta

Zucchini is a super-versatile vegetable that can masquerade as bread.

click to enlarge Zoodles - PHOTO COURTESY OF KELLY ANDREWS
Photo courtesy of Kelly Andrews

Summertime is intolerable, save for locally grown zucchini. But the beach! The sunshine!, you might say. And sure, those things are fine if you’re into being hot and sweaty while sitting around in your underwear. But I don’t have a small shrine devoted to Willis Carrier, inventor of the air conditioner — may that beautiful, brilliant man rest in peace — for nothing. Zucchini makes the months of high temps worthwhile. Plus, it’s a super-versatile vegetable that can masquerade as bread, French fries or pasta. Recently, I invested in a solid spiralizer, one that has different blades you can swap in and out, etc. The ability to make “zoodles” (term courtesy of the internet) is bringing me new life. It’s perfect if you’re trying to eat more veggies, but find yourself fantasizing about napping on a bed made entirely out of fresh-baked Italian loaves, which, upon waking, you could roll over and eat your way out of.


·  1 zucchini, small to medium size

·  1 jar pasta sauce of choice (or homemade — go crazy)

·  Parmesan cheese, grated for garnishing

·  1 loaf French bread

·  garlic salt

·  2 tbsp. butter


Pick up a small, hand-held spiralizer if you aren’t ready to commit to zoodles for life. Buy a zucchini that’s of the smaller phallic size (as far as zucchinis go) for easy pressing into the blades. Slice the ends off; stick the zucchini into the proper place; and then turn that long, hard veggie into thin little noodles. Boil a pot of water and throw the zoodles in for about one or two minutes, then drain. Press the water out with a paper towel while heating up the spaghetti sauce. If you aren’t ready to say goodbye to all the carbs, you can make homemade garlic bread. Butter both sides of the bread slices, liberally coating with garlic salt, and bake at 425 degrees for approximately 10-15 minutes. Pour the sauce onto your zoodles and sprinkle with fresh Parmesan cheese.

Kelly Andrews is a poet who plans to stick around Pittsburgh indefinitely. You can find more sad, healthy (and funny) meals on her blog sadhealthymeals.wordpress.com.

Comments (0)
Comments are closed.