Not-a-Pasta and Sauce in under 20min

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I am still in love with my spiralizer and I needed to try this new zucchini pasta thing everyone seems to be eating. How on earth can a vegetable compare to semolina pasta? I should add the disclaimer that pasta is not one of my preferred foods, so feel free to discredit my review based on this. Zucchini really does make a good pasta, it fooled no one, but it didn’t elicit the “I do not like this mommy” or the more typical “I SAID I wanted PASTA, not this” or worse the picking of food out of a dish and dumping on table (really?!)

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My father even ate this (wise man did not ask what it was) and seemed to enjoy it. He said he did anyway! I peeled the zucchini and saved the inner noodles for the children because well pasta is not green.

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I had about 20 mins to get this on the table so I opted for store bought marinara, and I added again, store bought roasted red peppers to the sauce because well store bought sauce, even the good ones, are a little boring. We buy the Kirkland brand marinara because when I migrated to a kosher kitchen I discovered all the kosher marinara’s were disgustingly sweet and way too expensive. Then I found the little U on the Kirkland marinara at Costco and we have not turned back. its garlicky, its not too salty and most important it doesn’t take like hot ketchup. Although my favourite sauces are still a 1) homemade arrabiata, 2) my lentil spaghetti sauce, this comes in third mostly for being fast

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Tomato sauce on a vegetable will fill no one up for long, so the next step was finding an easy protein to add. I could have dumped some soy protein fake meat stuff in here, but i really do not like that. I also could have added some already cooked lentils, but we had eaten a lot of lentils that week. Then I had a flash, we made awesome seared tofu the other day and everyone (the aforementioned father who was eating with us included) enjoyed it. it would be a perfect addition

tofu

 

This entire meal consisted of only 8 ingredients, all easily sourced (not pictured, fresh basil from garden and the roasted red pepper jar)

quickdinner

Serves: 4                                   Prep time:5-10min                           Cook time:10-15min

Ingredients:
1/2 large jar of favourite pasta sauce (about 1.5 cups)
1 roasted red pepper (optional)
4 average sized zucchinis peeled
1 brick of tofu
1-2tsp olive oil
garlic powder
salt/herbamare
fresh basil (optional)

Method:

Spiralize the zucchini into 4 bowls, set aside

in a small pot warm the sauce, adding the roasted red pepper if using

Cut the tofu into bite sized pieces and toss with garlic powder and salt, Heat oil in large frying pan over medium heat and when hot add the tofu in a single layer. This is the most labour intensive step, you have to let the tofu crisp up then flip to crisp the other sides. if you are short on time, or have children distracting you, it can be done just like a stir fry and the tofu will still develop the flavours just not as much of a crispy shell.

Add sauce to each bowl, tofu and then garnish with fresh basil.

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Bonus: The “Parmesan” in the picture is just a mix of a handful of raw cashews, 2 tbsp nutritional yeast, and a pinch of kosher salt put through my mini food processor.  (obviously this part is not nut-free, but simply nutritional yeast sprinkled on top makes a decent cheese alternative for pastas, or you could use raw pumpkin or sunflower seeds)

For BABY: you can blanch the spiralized zucchini (drop it in boiling water for a few seconds then take out and rinse), then just chop everything up finely, crumble the tofu, or for baby I would even suggest just crumbling in the raw tofu not bothering with cooking and it will lower the sodium content that way too…….

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