Fresh from the garden summer zucchini and tomatoes are the basis for this simple healthy meal. If you haven’t tried Zoodles (zucchini noodles) you are in for a treat! If you have tried them before then you know they are a great option for eating light or low carb.
The sun is shifting. I can see it in the early morning hue on the trees outside my window. There is a definite golden glow that now graces the green leaves in the early morning hours. The first acknowledgement that fall is on its way.
We’ve had a particularly warm and long summer for Seattle, and I’ve been saying “I’m ready for cooler weather” for the last few weeks. I have mixed emotions for sure! Seeing that golden glow on one hand signals crisp fall air, you know the kind that hits your cheeks with just a little coolness. It signals football games, and soup. The smell of the fallen leaves as you shuffle your feet through them. I’m ready for all that. Really ready for all that. The flip side of that means summer is coming to an end. This is the part where I go “wait, I didn’t ride my bike enough yet” ( well at all, and that’s not good!) I didn’t BBQ enough, I didn’t swim enough. Wait..I’m not ready for summer to end!
Luckily there are a few more weeks to savor all that is summer. Including end of summer fresh produce, the zucchini and the tomatoes at this time of year are at their most magnificent peak. This recipe is super simple and you can have a healthy meal on the table in just about 15-20 min. Leaving you lots of extra time to enjoy the last few remaining weeks of summer.
“Zoodles” ( Zucchini noodles) have been on my “must try” list for a while. I just haven’t had the proper tools to make those cute little green noodle strands. It is possible to actually cut very thin strips with a chefs knife, but why? when a simple little inexpensive tool ( aka a julienne peeler) makes it almost effortless. Que in an excuse to visit Crate & Barrel and a way to increase my daily steps (10K/day goal with fitbit-more about that here). Oh yes, I have it all calculated out. It’s approx.. 1800 steps roundtrip to Williams-Sonoma, 2000 RT to Crate & Barrel and 4000 RT to Sur la Table. (did I mention I have a fondness (o.k possibly an addiction) for Kitchen gadgets? I digress…back to the Zoodles. A julienne peeler does all the work. Simply cut off the ends of the zucchini so you have a flat surface to place on the cutting board. Run the julienne peeler down the side of the zucchini until you hit the seeds, then turn the zucchini and repeat the same thing on all sides until you have a mound of perfect zucchini noodles. It’s as easy as that! It’s also possible to use a sprializer to make the Zoodles as well.
I’m using these beautiful mini heirloom and cherry tomatoes I found at my local market, but you can use any variety of tomatoes you wish. Cut them in half if you’re using the small tomatoes, or in small pieces (removing the seeds) if you are using larger tomatoes.
A quick toss in a heated pan with some olive oil, garlic, and a pinch of red pepper flakes ;top it all off with some crumbled feta and you’ve got dinner (or lunch) served.
Feel free to add any other fresh summer vegetables to the mix as well. I had some fresh corn and ripe avocado that I added to the top. A quick and easy meal option and you still have time to go enjoy the rest of summer.
- 4 medium zucchini
- 1 pint mini heirloom or cherry tomatoes ( or 4-6 large heirloom tomatoes)
- ¼ cup olive oil, divided
- 2-3 cloves garlic, minced
- pinch of red pepper flakes (optional)
- ¼ cup feta cheese, crumbled
- salt and pepper to taste
- Cut end off zucchini. Place the zucchini upright with one of the flat ends on a cutting board. Using a julienne peeler ( or a spiralizer) create the “noodles” by passing the peeler down the lengthwise side of the zucchini. Repeat, rotating the zucchini until you reach the seed area of the zucchini and it is no longer possible to create long strands. Set aside
- Cut cherry tomatoes in half, or heirloom tomatoes in small chunks (removing seeds). Set aside.
- Heat a skillet over medium heat. Add olive oil, minced garlic, salt and pepper to taste and red pepper flakes (optional). Sauté for about a minute until the garlic becomes fragrant. Add zucchini and tomatoes and continue to sauté for 4-5 minutes until vegetables begin to soften.
- Serve noodles immediately and garnish with crumbled feta cheese.