Thursday, February 5, 2015

Ground Turkey Stir Fry with Zucchini Noodles

So yesterday I posted my favorite way to make zucchini noodles so I thought I'd follow up by posting one of my favorite dishes to make with them!  This stir fry is a quick low calorie alternative to regular stir fry.  It came together quickly and had a little something for everyone so my kids could at least eat the part that appealed to them :) 

I used a store bought sauce and added my own spices to it so that saved a little time.  If you do go with a store bought sauce just watch the sugar content!  I like San-J Teriyaki sauce and marinade.  It's super tasty and only has 3g of carbohydrate.  Or, if you have some extra time, make your own sauce!

Stir Fry w/ ground Turkey and zucchini noodles (serves 4)
1 recipe zucchini noodles
1 lb. lean ground turkey
4 cups frozen stir fry veggies
2 cloves garlic, minced
1/2 tsp. ground ginger
1/4 tsp. red pepper flake
sesame seeds (to taste)
3/4 cup teriyaki sauce (I use San-j teriyaki or you can make your own)

In a large pan cook ground turkey until cooked through.  Add frozen veggies and cover.  Cook over medium heat, stirring occasionally, until veggies are thawed and crisp tender.  Add seasonings and sesame seeds and continue cooking 2 minutes or until garlic is fragrant.  Toss with cooked zucchini noodles and teriyaki sauce.  Cook until sauce is heated through and enjoy!

Wednesday, February 4, 2015

How to make Zucchini Noodles

Alex got me a veggie spiralizer for Christmas and I've been loving it!  So I thought I'd share with you how to make zucchini noodles!  They are super tasty, very filling, a great way to add more veggies to you diet, and a lower calorie option to regular pasta.  

The first thing you'll need is a spiralizer. I have a Paderno World Cuisine spiral veggie slicer.  It's similar to an apple corer and works great. It has different types of blades so you can slice your vegetable in many different styles.  In the picture below I'm making zucchini spaghetti. It also works perfectly with yellow summer squash and a variety of other vegetables and fruits. It's about $30 on Amazon.  Here's a link with more information: Paderno Slicer. They also have fancy ones that are automatic and do the work for you. I just wanted something simple to start and this has done the trick. Check it out for yourself!

Once I've sliced the zuchinni into noodles.  I toss them with salt and leave them to dry out a bit in a strainer over a paper towel.  You could also just leave the strainer in a sink to drip but I don't trust my kids so out of reach and over a paper towel it is :)  This helps to remove some of the moisture so that when you cook it the vegetables maintain a noodle type consistency instead of becoming a mushy mess. Below is a picture of what this looks like...I'm always surprised by the amount of liquid that strains out.


After about 30 minutes, a lot of the moisture will have strained out.  Now take a paper towel and dab the top of the noodles to get any extra moisture off of them.  They are never going to be perfectly dry so don't go crazy trying.   The paper towel also helps to remove some of the salt so they aren't overly salty.  The rest of the salt will help give them flavor when cooked. 

When the zoodles are ready to cook, heat 1 T. of olive oil in a large skillet and add the zoodles.  These are very thin and cook very quickly.  Saute zucchini for about 2-3 minutes, stirring constantly.  At this point add any spices you want.   Basically the seasoning will bring out the flavor of whatever dish you are making with the zoodles.  If you're making an Italian dish use garlic, an Asian dish use ginger, etc. If you're going to eat them plain I like to add a little red pepper flake to make things interesting :)  Once the spices are added continue sauteing for 2 more minutes or until zoodles are slightly tender.

 Once your zoodles are finished you can add them to any recipe that calls for noodles! Top them with your favorite sauces or mix them in a stir fry.  They are delicious!

Zucchini Noodle Recipe
4 medium zucchini (yellow squash works well too)
salt (to taste)
1 T. olive oil
1/2 tsp. minced garlic
additional spices as desired

Wash and cut off ends of zucchini.  Spiral slice zucchini using a veggie spiralizer.  Toss zoodles with salt and place in a strainer for at least 30 min. to remove extra moisture.  Dab zoodles with paper towel to remove more moisture and some of the extra salt.

In a large pan heat 1 T. olive oil.  Add zoodles and saute (stirring constantly) for 2-3 minutes.  Add garlic and other desired spices and continue to cook for another 1-3 minutes or until zoodles are crisp tender.  Serve immediately in your favorite pasta dish.