Zoodles of Fun
A helpful kitchen tool turns zucchini and other veggies into something fun to eat.
There is always an abundance of zucchini available during the summer months. Beginning in early June, these easy-to-grow, green beauties start showing up in everyone’s garden. However, many grocery stores and fresh markets offer them all year long.
For many, the go-to zucchini recipe is usually bread or cake. There’s certainly nothing wrong with that. Those are some of my favorite preparations, too. But there are other quick and easy ways to make zucchini the star of the plate and more tempting for your family to eat.
A spiralizer does just that! It turns vegetables, like zucchini, carrots and seedless cucumber, into long curly strands or spirals. Spiralizers come in all shapes and sizes. I have two vegetable cutters in my kitchen. The smaller one is cone-shaped on each end; the top end cuts thin, spaghetti-like strands and the bottom end cuts thicker ribbons.
I recently purchased a second spiralizer, and it is much larger. It has a sturdy platform with a handle attached that turns the zucchini, along with three sharp, interchangeable blades. The first blade cuts thin spirals, the second cuts thick spirals, and the third blade cuts flat ribbons, giving you an additional option. The handle on this model makes the process quicker and easier. You can find a variety of spiral cutters, but most are inexpensive and easy to use. Pick one that is sturdy and easy to clean.
Zucchini strands, or zoodles, can be used in many dishes to replace higher carb foods, like pasta or potatoes. Zoodles are fun to make and are something that may entice your kids to join you in the kitchen. When cooked, zoodles have a similar texture to pasta, but with less carbs and calories, compared to other vegetables, like squash.
I’ve created many recipes using my vegetable cutter. Spiral Zucchini and Pepper Sauté is a favorite summer recipe that nicely compliments grilled fish or chicken. This side dish is so colorful and packed with vitamins and protein. It comes together in less than 10 minutes, which makes it a quick, fresh pairing for any summer meal.
I have learned from my years of cooking, that using the right tools in the kitchen can make all the difference in the world. Many tools make cooking easy and fun, while some even make the food more appetizing.
Where can you find zucchini and other fresh vegetables to use in this and other recipes?
Alice’s Produce Garden, 6828A Beach Drive, SW, Ocean Isle Beach. Open Daily. Alice’s Produce Garden is known for boiled peanuts, peaches and fresh vegetables. She only accepts cash.
Heritage Fresh Market, 20 Sellers Road, Supply. Open daily 9 am to 5:30 pm. Heritage Fresh Market is known for strawberries and fresh produce from their farm.