I have always considered myself quite a nice person. I like food of all shapes, flavours and colours. From every country and continent. I don’t discriminate, I am an equal opportunity eater. It’s only the doctors who say I’m intolerant. And certain foods who refuse to tolerate me. They certainly refuse to recognise and respect my right to eat them without major physical discomfort and distress.


Gluten and lactose are not my friends.


Despite the negative attitudes surrounding me from many of those I love best, (cakes, ice cream, hot toast) I decided to become a chef. Not always easy when you live in a bread and milk filled world. I like to think that this has helped me become a better person as I embrace my differences and refuse to let the gluten get me down. I believe InTolerance. I am the InTolerant Chef.

Food should not be about what you can’t eat, but what you can and what you enjoy eating. This blog is about my journey of cooking and eating and discovery. It’s not a definitive guide to allergy awareness nor do my intolerances make me an expert. Your body is your responsibility, not mine. I only know what works for me.


I can tell you this..... No glutens were harmed in the making of this website.

January 22, 2013

Quick Veggie Garden Pasta


















It's that time of year again, where despite the HOT, miserable weather we've been having, the vegetable garden is showering us with bounty almost faster than we can eat it


I know the Northern Hemisphere is freezing, while we in Australia are battling record searing heat and multiple devastating bushfires.  We all have our own particular climate problems and I hope you are all safe and well, but with weeks here where the thermometer has rarely dropped from the thirties and longed-for-rain promised but rarely forthcoming, it's a bit hard to work up enough enthusiasm to eat- let alone cook, a nice meal





Some nights the less cooking I do the better! No oven or grill to add heat to the kitchen, no standing over a smoking hot BBQ plate.... just a simple pot of hot water is all that's needed to make a fresh, tasty, healthy meal- with a little help from my friends in the veggie garden




































This is a recipe I've been playing around with for years- if you can even call it a 'real' recipe!


A packet of gluten free pasta, some garden veggies sliced then quickly blanched to wilt just a little, but retaining texture, and simply dressed with basil and olive oil. So simple, but oh so delicious.
For more of a substantial meal for the carnivores, a handful of leftover cooked chicken, or shredded ham or salami could certainly be added- but I like the pure simplicity of this dish and it certainly lets the veggies be the star


















1 packet of gluten free Spaghetti (I prefer the San Remo brand)
A few freshly plucked Zucchini, Carrots and Tomatoes
(you can use whatever is at hand- nice little peas, some sliced fresh beans, capsicums.. etc)
Basil
Lovely Olive Oil
Salt and freshly ground Pepper

Also have at the ready a colander with plenty of drain holes, and one that will fit the whole lot of pasta, and more, in at once






First things first- put a large pot of water on to boil, this takes the longest to prepare out of all the recipe ingredients. I had plenty of time to scrub and prep and slice and dice everything else while the pot boiled, and the pasta cooked. Perfect timing actually!
Once it comes to a fast rolling boil, season it generously with salt and pop in the pasta to cook





















While this is doing it's thing, prepare the veggies.
The ideal is to have lovely long strips of vegetable to mimic the shape and size of the spaghetti. I love using this great julienne peeler I have, it makes perfect little strings with no more effort than peeling. They are available at just about every kitchenware shop and every Asian grocer that I've ever walked into. If you don't have one of these, and don't want to muck about with knife work, just use your ordinary peeler to get lovely long strips and just apply a bit more pressure than usual to make the pieces a bit thicker.
If I was using flat strips of veggies, I would probably change my choice of pasta to fettuccine just to keep a uniform look. It might sound silly, but pretty food is even tastier!





















Once you've finished with the zucchini and carrots ( I know they're not orange, but sadly they're not the pretty purple that was advertised on the seed packet either)   pop the strips into the bottom of the colander and place it in the sink for ready draining





















Now for the dressing:
Chop the tomatoes as finely or as chunky as you like- I prefer nice and dainty to match the daintiness of the thin spaghetti. Tear or chop the basil leaves, add a good pinch of salt and freshly ground black pepper for bite, and a good glug or two of lovely olive oil.
I have a stash of flavoured olive oils for dressings, and just happen to have a Basil infused one in my cupboard, otherwise a nice grassy EVOO would have worked well too





















When the spaghetti is done, immediately pour the whole pot directly over the vegetable strips in the colander and drain really well.






















 Give it a few good shakes, but don't let it just sit or the veggies are in danger of overcooking and losing their lovely freshness






















Quickly tip on all the dressing ingredients and stir it all through until beautifully mixed together and glossy from the oil






















Check for seasoning, and serve immediately drizzled with a little more of that lovely olive oil- remember it's good for you!




















See, I promised you that this was a quick, easy and tasty dish- didn't I?
Barely any cooking for these hot, hot days, or when you're in a huge rush but still want a light, healthy dinner. What could be better than this?




















So Dear Readers, is it hot or cold in your part of the world, and do you have a veggie garden too?
























.

29 comments:

  1. Interesting idea! Looks great, have tweeted it along :) I recently made a GF stir fry which is pretty similar or at least you could use a lot from this recipe...

    the URL is http://www.empowernetwork.com/cjto/blog/vegetarian-recipes-day-2/?id=cjto

    check it out!

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  2. Rebecca - I love pasta dishes like this...so refreshing and tasty. Your garden looks wonderful...we can't wait for spring to arrive...it has been minus 3 degrees in our neck of the woods!

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    1. Hi Ina, that's waaay to cold for me! Here's to an early Spring :)

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  3. Beautiful pasta primavera, Becca! I really like the idea of the zucch and carrot strips. Oh, and on the point of carrots, I've found the coloured ones rarely have all the colours in the seed packets, despite what it says! Our garden has really felt the heat this year - we actually get a better harvest in the slightly cooler months, although we have had oodles of cucurbits this year! :)

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    Replies
    1. Thanks sweetie! So many of my little crops have struggled with the heat, and I've given up totally on my pumpkins and cucumbers :( I'm so glad you've got plenty of zucs, troms and marrows- but they'll be coming out your ears soon! xox

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  4. Such a fresh and delicious meal, Bec. There's nothing nicer than home grown produce! ; )

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    1. Thanks Lizzy, it's so satisfying isn't it- not to mention tasty! :)

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  5. Oh that was super quick! And with the zucchini, I use that shredded zucchini as the pasta-love it for a low carb version :D

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    1. I saw your great recipe Lorraine, and loved it, so clever indeed! With my kiddies though I need the carbs to fill them up before they eat me out of house and home :) I'll try yours though as part of my NewYears regular (sigh)weightloss resolution xox

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  6. What a great fresh dish - perfect for this weather. Its been awfully sticky hasnt it!
    p.s. I need one of those peelers. Now!

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    Replies
    1. Thanks Nic! Try your local Asian food market, or I believe that Luke Nguyen has bought one out as part of his cookware range

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  7. I came home from work tonight it was so hot I just knew I couldn't fire up the oven. All I wanted to do was cook a pasta - and it was quite similar to this, only, I didn't grow my own vegetables. My garden died when we went away for a week! xx

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    1. What a shame Charlie! It's sure been a struggle this year hasn't it? I'll forgive you for using shop bought this time :) xox

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  8. The yellow carrots are better for the photo the red one would have coloured everything else, looks nice. Most of my vegs are in pots undercover from the heat so are doing well.

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    1. Thanks Simcha, I'm glad that they've escaped the heat. I've been jealous of your cucumber crop though :(

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  9. So excited to find your blog- I'm a coeliac (gluten free) so going to have some fun now looking through your recipes : )

    x
    Michelle
    www.michellesstylefile.com

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    1. Thanks Michelle! I hope you find some yummy ideas :)

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  10. I have been eating so many salads this summer, it has just been too hot for anything else. I love the look of your salad, fresh from the garden, I will have to get out my peeler ;)

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    1. Hasn't it been HOT! Salads have definitely been the order of the day here too. Happy Peeling :)

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  11. Beautiful, simple and fresh - what a great summer meal. I've just purchased a pasta machine, so am looking for ways to justify it!

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    1. Thanks Amanda! Oooh lucky you! It's so much fun trying out new equipment isn't it? :)

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  12. What a gorgeous dish, I so love the idea of thin strips of zucchini yes but CARROT! Had never thought of that. & alongside the pasta, just beautiful! With lots of fresh basil...perfection.
    Heidi xo

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    1. Thanks Heidi! This was also a great way to get my kiddies to eat even more veggies when they were little. Fresh basil is heavenly, isn't it? :)

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  13. Fantastic Plate and very colorfull.
    Regards
    Olguis.

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  14. It has been hot hasn't it. Lucky you for having an abundant garden.
    I harvested my one tomato yesterday, exciting times round here :-)

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  15. One is still better than none Brydie! I hope you turn it into something super special indeed :)

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  16. I love this! I have often used the spaghetti squash as fake spaghetti--this is a new take on "pasta" for me. Thank you!

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