Zucchetti – Zucchini Spaghetti with Roast Capsicum and Tomato Sauce

A friend told me about zuchetti a while back and I was so intrigued I knew I had to try it. So I made it for my family one night with a tomato passata and boiled some regular pasta as a back up. To my surprise discovered that my entire family enjoyed it.  My Plan B pasta was not needed at all.

What is zucchetti? In case you don’t know, zucchetti is zucchini shredded into thin strips – like spaghetti.  Zucchini + spaghetti = zucchetti. Ingenious.

I have to admit, the first bite was a little bit strange for me but after that it was super tasty. And so healthy. (Although I could never, ever replace real pasta.)

I made it again this week, so that Boyfriend could try.  I made it with a roasted capsicum and tomato sauce.

Here’s what I did:

Ingredients:

3 zucchinis (as a rough guide, use 1.5 zucchinis per person)

1 capsicum

An assortment of tomatoes (I used a handful of cherry tomatoes, two kumato tomatoes and one normal tomato) (dice the big tomatoes and cut the cherry tomatoes in half, leaving a few whole)
1 can of diced tomatos
1 tablespoon of tomato paste
1 brown onion (finely diced)
2-cloves of garlic (chopped up small)
1 small chilli (chopped up small)
6-8 rashers of  bacon (cut into thin strips)
A handful of fresh basil
A handful of dry herbs
Olive oil
Salt and pepper

Method

Roasting the capsicum:

Turn your oven on to 180 degrees celcius.

Place your capsicum (cut into large pieces) skin side up on a baking tray and place in the oven.

Keep an eye on your capsicum – when the skins start to blister and blacken you can take them out of the oven.

Place the capsicum pieces in a bag – either a freezer bag or a paper bag will work fine.

After about 10 minutes or so, the capsicum will have cooled a little and will be all sweaty. Take them out and peel off the skins.

Slice the capsicum into small pieces.

The sauce:

Heat up a large pan and add a splash of olive oil.

Cook your bacon until it is as crispy as you like it.

Add in the onion. When it’s started to soften add in the garlic and chilli.

After a couple of minutes, add a tablespoon of tomato paste. Allow it to cook off. If you don’t, your sauce will taste like tomato paste – trust me, I learnt this the hard way.

Add in all your fresh tomatoes and let them cook for a minute or two.

Then, add in your canned tomatoes.   I like to add a bit of water to the can to get the rest of the tomato off the sides and to add a little bit of liquid to the sauce.

Add in a handful of dried herbs (oregano, etc), a handful of fresh basil and your roasted capsicum.

Season with salt and pepper.

Allow the sauce to continue simmering while you prepare your zucchetti.

Zucchetti:

Slice your zucchinis into thin strips using a mandolin or a julienne machine.

Heat up a pan and add a dash of olive oil.

Pan fry the zucchetti for literally no more than one minute, to warm it through and soften it a little.

Use tongs to place the zucchetti straight into a bowl.

Top with your sauce and some extra fresh basil.

Voila!

Would I make it again? Of course.