Sunday, May 23, 2010

Get ready for zucchetti

I consider May to be a kick off to more outdoor gatherings and potlucks. With Memorial Day weekend drawing near (I figured I'd give you some time to plan this time, as my Cinco de Mayo post was cutting it rather close), I need to start thinking about what to bring to these events.

Most of the time I like to whip up raw versions of dishes I remember eating as a child, such as jicama-based "potato" salad, vegan slaw, broccoli salad, eggless salad stuffed into button mushroom caps to look like those two-bite deviled originals, taco salad (sorry about all the "salad," as it is a theme at these things), etc. Even a zucchetti-style salad is sure to please.

What's "zucchetti?"

Well, it's my term for the spiral sliced zucchini, which ends up looking like spaghetti noodles (perfect for spaghetti tacos; yes, I did say "spaghetti tacos"). I am far from the first to do this, and I'm sure I'm nowhere near the last (in reference to the spiral-sliced zucchini noodles; not the raw spaghetti a.k.a. "zucchetti" tacos).

Before I got my own spiral slicer (this rawsome model I pick up a number of years back from the Natural Zing website), I used to spend a great deal of time cutting my zucchini into thin slices, stacking them on top of one another and slicing them again into thin strips.

But, look how fast and curly they turn out when you have a gadget like this. It's so much fun to create a ton of spiral noodles, making it simple to serve a whole crowd. Even my son likes to take a turn cranking them out (while supervised by an adult, of course).

Lucky for me, I recently got another, more compact version from Natural Zing, as well. No wonder I'm back on a zucchetti kick (although both spiral slicers can be used with a variety of other veggies, too). I plan on doing a better comparison between the two soon. Maybe I'll have a showdown or something on my blog.

In the meantime, I thought I'd share another of my blast from the past recipes with you spiral slicer owners and those considering purchasing one soon. Enjoy!

"Zucchetti" Salad
3 zucchini, cut or spiralized into "noodles"
1 medium cucumber, chopped
1 medium green pepper, chopped
1 medium tomato, chopped
2 Tbsp. olive oil
4-6 Tbsp. of your own salad seasoning* (or try this premade mix)

In a large bowl, toss together the zucchini, cucumber, green pepper, tomato and olive oil. Mix in seasonings and adjust amount based on your taste. Enjoy or chill until ready to serve.

*To make your own version of the traditional bottled salad seasoning, combine a mixture of nutritional yeast (the prepackaged stuff contains Romano cheese), sesame seeds, poppy seeds, paprika, celery seed, garlic, black pepper, red pepper and sea salt.

Shannonmarie, a.k.a. "Rawdorable," also posts on her blog of the same name,

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