Zoodles! I just love saying that. It's impossible to say the word "ZOODLES!" and not crack a smile. Try it. I dare you! Did you smile? Told you! ☺
A while back, I wrote a fairly extensive blog post on pasta and various forms of noodles (about halfway down the post)
. At the time, I hadn't actually made zoodles for my website, and felt a bit silly having not. So, I set out to make them as a recipe! Zoodles are just zucchini cut into strips. They approximate the sense of pasta in that they're roughly the same shape, they don't have a lot of flavor on their own and they serve as a fantastic vehicle for "sauce" and other goodies.
Traditional pasta has gluten holding it together. While it's possible to overcook it, it'll still be a noodle when you're done cooking it. It IS possible, however, to overcook zoodles. If you were to throw a handful of freshly cut zoodles into a cauldron of hot gurgling sauce, the zoodles would release all their water and break down in just a few minutes. They would become "one with the sauce" and won't really be very zoodle-y, any longer.
This is where some of these little tricks come in.
First, you need to cut the zoodles. There are all kinds of tools for this. The most basic is a standard vegetable peeler. Just peel the zucchini, deeper and deeper. You'll create a series of imperfect, but flat wide "zoodles", which will resemble green pappardelle. Alternately, you can use something like the Spirooli
. I personally don't like these much and prefer to go with a more standard flat mandoline
In the photos, you'll see that I cut mine with a flat mandoline. In my case, I created thick strips of zucchini, then stacked the strips upon one another, then cut them into 1/3 inch strips with a knife. This approach gives me a heartier zoodle, with a bit more texture and bite. However, you can make them thinner, thicker, etc. It's all personal preference.
Once you've got the zoodles cut, many will simply pop them into a microwaveable container and nuke them for a minute or two. This will create a hot bed of zoodles. This is, without question, a way you can go!
My method is a little different, but tends to have a little more flavor and ... love ... cooked into it. It takes a little longer, but I feel the results have that little something extra.
Once you've got your cooked zoodles, top them with any number of sauces. How about some nice Marinara Sauce
or a nice thick goopy alfredo sauce