Sunday, July 17, 2016

Veggies Noodles!

I have a veggie spiralizer that, sadly, spends more time in the closet than on my countertop. But every once in awhile, I drag it out and make zucchini noodles (or zoodles) for a raw version of pasta with marinara or vegan fettucine alfredo. I've tried other veggies — beets, sweet potato — but that's about where my creativity stops.

But a new cookbook — Nourishing Noodles by Chris Anca— just might change all that! I was sent a review copy, and I've already made some really unique dishes. Not only does this book contain recipes for the traditional raw zucchini noodles, it also features recipes using apple noodles, kelp noodles, celeriac noodles, chayote noodles, daikon noodles, and so many more. Some recipes are raw, but others are cooked. There's even a chapter on desserts made with raw noodles (pear noodles with chocolate sauce! carrot cake noodles!).

I selected a couple recipes. First up, I just had to try the Noodle Pizza because noodles and pizza! This is made with a baked chickpea-zucchini-hemp crust, and that's topped with zucchini and sweet potato noodles, eggplant, mushrooms, red pepper "marinara," and a homemade garlic-chive cashew cheese.

I've never had anything quite like it, but it was delicious and beautiful. The cashew cheese was creamy and super garlicky. The crust doesn't hold together well when lifted, so it's best to eat this with a fork. But I was totally okay with that.

I had some leftover Garlic & Chive Cashew Cheese and some leftover zucchini and sweet potato. So the next day, I made a simple raw noodle dish with spiralized zukes, sweet potatoes, and the creamy cheese. I topped that with hemp seeds for added nutrition. It was like vegan alfredo!

Finally, tonight I made the dish that first caught my eye when flipping through the book — Seaweed Noodles with Maple Orange Tempeh. 

There's a gorgeous photo of this in the book (much better than mine), but the word "seaweed" scared me away. I'm not a big sea veggie fan (except for nori). But upon closer inspection, I saw the seaweed was kelp noodles. And I love kelp noodles because they don't taste fishy at all. In fact, they don't taste like anything, but they have a neat, crunchy texture. The kelp noodles are mixed with beet noodles (I used golden beets), carrot noodles, and a spicy tahini sauce. On top is the most delicious maple-orange glazed tempeh, sesame seeds, and bits of nori. The savory sauce and tempeh combined with the crunchy noodles made for a very satisfying dish. Bonus: It takes quite awhile to eat because it involves so much chewing. And I love meals that drag on and on because I'm happiest when I'm eating.

I love this book, and I know it will inspire me to branch out and use my spiralizer in more creative ways. I plan to try the Curry-Lime Sweet Potato Noodles, the Zucchini Noodle Salad with Moroccan Chickpeas, the BLT Noodles (made with zucchini noodles, kale, cashew cheese, and coconut bacon), and the Fresh Spring Rolls stuffed with carrot and cucumber noodles.

1 comment:

Jennifer said...

I just busted out my spiralizer (got it for my birthday) and I am liking it, but it works mostly with big veggies, not small ones like carrots. So I am a little loss right now what to use it for. Just what you have reviewed has been pretty inspirational. Spiralizing veggies on a pizza is great! I betcha they would cook evenly on a normal crust.