Bacon-Basil Zucchini “Pasta”
I bought myself a relatively inexpensive Mandoline Slicer and I love it! It makes so many jobs in the kitchen so much faster. There are some jobs that would take so long with a knife that I just never even bother. Making paleo “noodles” out of vegetables is one such job. If you’re looking for a mandolin, make sure you get one that can do a fine julienne. A ton of different vegetables can be julienned into long strips and steamed, braised or sautéed as mock noodles. And my kids LOVE them (there’s something so satisfying about a long skinny slurpy noodle, especially if it is a carrot noodle, a turnip noodle, or a broccoli stem noodle). This recipe features zucchini as a mock noodle, which has such a lovely flavor for Italian-inspired dishes. Omit the walnuts to make this recipe autoimmune protocol-friendly. This recipe makes enough for 3-4 hearty side dish portions. Alternately, you could add some grilled steak, prawns or chicken and turn this into a main dish for two. If you don’t have an oversized frying pan (which is another kitchen must-have!), you could try using a Wok.
- 4 large zucchini (about 2 pounds)
- 2 tsp Salt (to salt the zucchini)
- 1/3 cup bacon grease (crispy bits make it even better)
- ¼ cup chopped fresh basil
- 2 large garlic cloves, crushed
- ½ cup chopped Walnuts (optional)
1. Finely julienne zucchini lengthwise to create long strips of zucchini. Toss with salt in a colander and let sit in the sink for 1 hour.
2. Rinse the zucchini very, very thoroughly (have a taste to make sure it’s not salty at all). Drain on a tea towel or paper towels to get rid of as much moisture as possible.
3. Heat bacon grease in an oversized frying pan over medium-high heat. Add garlic and zucchini and sauté, stirring frequently until zucchini is cooked “al dente”, about 4-5 minutes (should be a very hot pan).
4. Toss in basil and walnuts (if using) and cook another 2 minutes, stirring a couple of times.