Pimp Your Veg part 6: Sally and her spirilizer 

One of the methods I wanted to include in my Pimp Your Veg is the use of a spirilizer to prepare and seriously pimp vegetables – I don’t own one, but I know that they can be a great tool for pimping vegetables…so I have invited the lovely Sally from Bewitching Kitchen to share some tips and ideas for using a spirilizer…Sally has brought some great ideas for your kitchen. Enjoy!!! 

First of all, I’d like to thank Elaine for inviting me to write this guest blog post on Foodbod, giving me the chance to share my passion for the gadget known as “spiralizer“, or if you prefer, “spiral cutter.” If you are looking for ways to pimp your veggies, the spiralizer is one of the easiest ways to achieve that. Even before I had one, I already felt that by prepping a veggie in a slightly unexpected way you’ll end up with wonderful dishes. For instance, shaved asparagus are great in salads or stir-fries. Grated tomatoes offer a texture that will amaze you in a fresh tomato sauce. But the spiralizer takes veggies to a new level and opens so many possibilities! In this post I’ll share two types of recipes, a refreshing salad and a comforting sweet potato “noodle.”
 CUCUMBER AND CARROT SALAD WITH CHICKPEAS

(from the Bewitching Kitchen)

juice of 1 lemon

3 tablespoons grapeseed oil

2 tablespoons white wine vinegar

¼ tsp salt

1/2 tsp minced fresh dill

1/2 can chickpeas, rinsed

2 medium cucumbers

2 large carrots (thick, appropriate for spiralizing)

toasted cashew nuts to taste

Make the dressing by whisking together lemon juice, grapeseed oil, vinegar, salt, and dill. In a medium bowl mix the chickpeas with the dressing and reserve while you prep the veggies.
Cut the cucumber into spirals and place on a baking sheet lined with paper towels to remove excessive moisture. Cut the carrots in spirals, place in a microwave-safe dish, add 1 tablespoon of water, cover with plastic and microwave for 30 seconds. Drain and place on paper towels to cool.
Once the carrots are cool and dry, add them and the cucumber to the bowl with the chickpeas, mix well to combine. Sprinkle with toasted cashews and serve. 

  Comments: You could conceivably skip the short microwaving step I suggested for the spiralized carrots. For my personal taste, I find the texture of raw spiralized carrots a little too harsh. By microwaving for 30 seconds they get a bit softer, and interact with the dressing a little better. Again, if you love super crunchy carrots, omit the microwaving.

Now for a warm version of pump your veggies… the spiralizer is wonderful to turn veggies such as zucchini and sweet potatoes into noodle-like entities. I already have zoodles (zucchini noodles) in my blog, so for this post I decided to go with sweet potatoes. They have a lot less water content than zucchini or cucumbers, so once you cut them you will notice they are pretty sturdy by comparison. I paired them with a hearty mushroom sauce made in the pressure cooker. 
SWEET POTATO NOODLES WITH MUSHROOM SAUCE

(from the Bewitching Kitchen)

for the mushroom sauce:

2 tablespoons olive oil

1 shallot, minced

1 celery rib, minced

1 tablespoon all-purpose flour

10 ounces shiitake mushrooms, stemmed, sliced

10 ounces cremini mushrooms, sliced

1/2 cup veggie stock (or water)

1/4 cup sherry

salt and pepper to taste

2 tablespoons heavy cream
for the sweet potatoes:

3 sweet potatoes, peeled and cut in spirals

2 tablespoons olive oil

salt and pepper to taste

minced chives and freshly grated Parmigiano cheese to serve

First make the mushroom sauce. Heat the olive oil in a sauce pan (or pressure cooker). When hot, add the shallots and celery and saute until soft and fragrant, seasoning lightly with salt and pepper. Add the flour, cook over low heat for a couple of minutes. Add the mushrooms, veggie stock and sherry. If using a pressure cooker, close it and cook for 25 minutes. Release the pressure quickly, open the pan and simmer the sauce a little longer if you find it too liquid. Finish the sauce with the heavy cream right before serving, adjust seasoning. Reserve.

Cook the sweet potato noodles. Add 2 tablespoons of olive oil to a large non-stick skillet over medium-heat. Add all the sweet potato “noodles”, increase the heat to high and move the noodles around to prevent the strands at the bottom from burning, season lightly with salt and pepper. After a couple of minutes, add a tablespoon or two of water, cover the pan and simmer for a few minutes. Check for doneness, once the strands are tender, shut the heat off, and keep them warm.
To serve, mix the mushroom sauce with the noodles, sprinkle with chives and a nice coating of Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese. 

Comments: You can cook the sweet potatoes strands in many different ways. For instance, you could add them to a baking sheet, coat lightly with olive oil and roast them until done. You could also steam them, or even drop them in boiling water like regular pasta. I prefer to saute on a non-stick skillet because it is easier and faster. You should use whatever method suits you best. As to the mushroom sauce, the pressure cooker gives a depth of flavor hard to get in a regular pan, but if you don’t have one, simply sautee the mushrooms together with the shallots and celery until they release some of their liquid and develop some color, then add the flour, cook for a couple of minutes. Add the liquid and simmer gently until thick, finishing with a touch of heavy cream as described.

The beauty of the spiralizer to make noodles is that you can opt to go real light by using zucchini, or a little more substantial with parsnips, rutabagas or sweet potatoes. Just as with regular pasta, your imagination will be the limit to what types of sauce to pair your veggies with. Cacio e pepe with zoodles? Bechamel with sweet potatoes? Fresh tomato sauce? Genovese pesto? Let your taste be your guide… and have fun with it!

I hope you enjoyed this little tour of Pimp Your Veg with a Spiralizer. There are many types of spiral cutters in the market, mine is this one. It has three blades that can give you flat ribbons, and two thickness of strands. The only drawback of this model is that carrots need to be very thick in diameter to properly work. Other than that, it is a great gadget to have and play with.

Elaine, I cannot thank you enough for your invitation to write a post on your blog, absolutely loved it!

Thank you for sharing your tips and lovely recipes, Sally xx

So, who’s ready to get spiralizing? If you like these ideas but don’t have the tool, try grating your vegetables to get an idea of whether you fancy making the purchase. Try grating strings as long as possible done the side of your grater – have fun! 

Advertisements

35 thoughts on “Pimp Your Veg part 6: Sally and her spirilizer 

  1. Pingback: PIMP YOUR VEG, A GUEST POST! | Bewitching Kitchen

  2. Eha

    Now you have made my imagination work overtime: have used zucchini and sweet potatoes in thus fashion for ages but stopped short of carrots . . . in a moment will be standing in front of my vegetable hoard saying ‘umm . . . what else would work’ 🙂 ? Really fun and interesting post!

    Liked by 1 person

    Reply
  3. Charlene

    Hi Elaine and Sally! How timely. I’ve debated getting a spiralizer for quite a while now. Was notified by ATK that today only, you can get the Paderno Tri-Blade for $23.99 at Amazon by using the code ATKSLICE, so I bit the bullet. This post sealed the deal. Have followed Sally’s blog since the beginning, I think. Time to explore yours now, Elaine.

    Liked by 1 person

    Reply
  4. Life Diet Health

    Elaine 🙂 I love my spiralizer and I’m always looking for new delicious recipes (I’ve a couple on my blog 🙂 ) Here there are not one but two yummy looking recipes… I’ve not tried sweet potato spirals yet so I think I’ll have a play over the weekend! Thank you both! 🙂 x

    Liked by 1 person

    Reply
  5. Pingback: SECRET RECIPE CLUB: RUSTIC CIABATTA AND MINI-MEATLOAVES | Bewitching Kitchen

  6. Kristine

    I love my spiralizer and I often have fun making all sorts of “vegetables spaghetti” with it. It is a fun way to eat healthy. Thanks for sharing this blog post with us, will use the mushroom sauce recipe next time!

    Liked by 1 person

    Reply

Let me know what you think..

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s