Lighter & Healthier

Zoodles & Cheese with Ham and Peas

by Shawnda on March 2, 2015

in Pork,Quick & Easy,The Great Detox of 2015,Veggies & Starches,Zoodles,Zucchini

Zoodles & Cheese with Ham and Peas

Hi. My name is Shawnda and I have the blahs. Can I just put out my Halloween lights (I take back every bad thing I ever said about the suburbs) and start watching Nightmare Before Christmas over and over again?

Because I’d really like to just fast-forward to the fun part of the year. When it’s warm. And there’s sunshine and $350+ electric bills. And football.

Zoodles & Cheese with Ham and Peas

All I wanted to do was chase away the gray-and-sads with a bowl full of spring for lunch.

All I wanted to do was feed the gray-and-sads with a bowl full of cookie dough ice cream for lunch. But there’s no cookie dough or ice cream in the house. Or cookies. Or potato chips. Or anything else starchy and crunchy with which I could self-medicate so vegetables it is.

Zoodles & Cheese with Ham and Peas

Lunch today is courtesy of two of my latest – and still current favorite – kitchen purchases. A spiral vegetable cutter, which turns a pound of zucchini into spaghetti-like strands, and a 1/2 tsp of sodium citrate, which allows shredded havarti cheese to melt without breaking so it can beautifully coat the zucchini noodles.

I sauteed the zucchini noodles, tossed them with chopped ham and leftover peas, and sat down with a bowl of veggies coated in comforting, melty cheese. You won’t quite get the same opiate response that you’d get with a bowl of Blue Bell. But a bowl of Blue Bell wouldn’t have knocked out 2 servings of vegetables on the day either.

Zoodles & Cheese with Ham and Peas

Zucchini noodles with havarti cheese sauce, ham, and green peas.

Nutritional Information
Calories: 407 | Fat: 19g | Fiber 7g | Protein 32g | Carbs 24g

Ingredients

  • 1 tsp olive oil
  • 1 lb zucchini, cut into spirals (I have this tool)
  • 1/4 cup water
  • 1/2 tsp sodium citrate
  • 4 oz havarti, shredded
  • 1 1/3 cup peas (if frozen, cook them in the microwave)
  • 4 oz ham, chopped
  • Salt
  • Pepper

Instructions

  1. Heat olive oil over high heat and add the zucchini noodles.
  2. Stir fry for 3-4 minutes and then transfer to a strainer/colander in the sink (the zucchini will continue to lose water as it cools - you don't want that extra water in your lunch).
  3. Wipe the pan clean and reduce heat to medium-low.
  4. Stir together the water and sodium citrate in the pan until steaming.
  5. Add the cheese and let heat for a minute, and then begin stirring. As the cheese melts, stir more frequently until uniform.
  6. Heat the peas and ham for 1-2 minutes in the microwave (don't add them cold to the cheese sauce).
  7. Add the zucchini and heated ham and peas to the cheese sauce, tossing to coat.
  8. Season with salt and pepper and serve.

Notes

Yields: 2 servings

Source: Confections of a Foodie Bride

Estimated time: 20 minutes

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Salmon & Avocado BLT Bowl

It’s not a low-rung college football game… but rest assured, if I ever stumble onto an orchard of money trees, I shall make it happen.

The SABLTZ is what you get when you cook a Open-Face Salmon & Avocado BLT for your family, but you’re EightySevenPercenting a Whole30 (long live goat cheese and yogurt!) and you don’t eat bread.

This can present problems but I’ve found that the quickest solution to most of those problems is also the simplest: Just put it over a bowl of zucchini noodles.

Salmon & Avocado BLT Bowl

I mentioned a few recipes ago that I treated myself to a fancy schmancy vegetable spiral cutter thingy and I think that it’s still the greatest thing ever.

So instead of eating the BLT in sandwich-form (which, by the way, got seriously rave reviews), this is how I approached it, Whole30 style:

Salmon & Avocado BLT Zoodles

It's a Whole30-friendly BLT in a bowl: seared salmon, avocado, and bacon over zucchini noodles.

Ingredients

  • 2 slices thick bacon
  • 2 3-4oz salmon filets, skin removed
  • Salt
  • Pepper
  • 2 medium-large zucchini, cut into spirals (I have this tool)
  • Olive oil
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 small handfuls of salad greens
  • 1 roma tomato, sliced
  • Avocado slices
  • Chopped chives

Instructions

  1. In a skillet over medium-high heat, crisp the bacon and transfer to a paper towel-lined plate, leaving behind as much bacon dripping as possible.
  2. Salt and pepper the salmon and sear, covered, for 4 minutes.
  3. Flip and cook another 2 minutes. Transfer to the plate with the bacon.
  4. Discard the renderings and wipe the pan clean.
  5. Heat a drizzle of olive oil over high heat and stir in the garlic.
  6. Season the zucchini with salt and pepper and add to the pan.
  7. Cook for 2-3 minutes, stirring frequently.
  8. Divide the zoodles between two bowls.
  9. Layer the remaining ingredients on top: a small handful of salad greens, sliced tomatoes, avocado, a slice of bacon, the salmon, and garnish with the chives.
  10. Serve immediately.

Notes

Yields: 2 servings

Inspired by Open-Face Salmon & Avocado BLTs

Estimated time: 30 minutes

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Chicken Zoodle Soup

Hi, my name is Shawnda and I am on day 20-ish of my Whole30-ish.

I’m alive. Ish.

Chicken Zoodle Soup

Actually, I’m completely alive. Totally fine. Skin looks ah-mazing. And am at that point where I’m like Bring on the glitter, the cape, and the leggings, bitches, because I am super woman and I can do anything!!!

Well, anything but pull-off leggings as pants. But really, who among us can?

Chicken Zoodle Soup

A couple of weeks ago, I waved my magic laptop and turned a Christmas giftcard into a Spiralizer. I eagerly awaited the arrival of a trendy kitchen gadget that I couldn’t wait to use four times and then shove it in the back of a cabinet. But I have since turned countless zucchini into countless yards of zucchini noodles – zoodles! – for fake pastas and it still sits on my counter.

Zucchini noodles from the spiralizer

I love that thing. But I also really love zucchini (and that’s the extent of plants that I’ve tested on the spiralizer thus far). I grow zucchini every year, until the vine borers get it, mostly because I like coating it in bacon and cheesy goodness. And this will happen with zoodles. Very soon.

It’s already made it into mac & cheese. I’ll have to show you that one soon.

Chicken Zoodle Soup

But for soup & sandwich night (or for me, soup and soup night), I simmered some chicken stock from the freezer with sliced onions, carrots, and minced garlic. During the last 5 minutes, I dropped zoodles and shredded rotisserie chicken into the broth to heat.

Each serving has 3 oz of chicken, an entire zucchini, and 1.5 cups of soup. Hearty, filling, and simple. And another couple of servings of plants checked off for the day!

Chicken Zoodle Soup

Homemade hearty chicken "zoodle" soup made with zucchini noodles.

Ingredients

  • 6 cups chicken broth or stock
  • 2 medium onions, sliced in very thin half-rounds
  • Handful of baby carrots, sliced into ~1/2-inch pieces
  • 2 cloves minced garlic
  • Salt
  • Pepper
  • Handful of chopped parsley
  • 2 Chicken breasts, cooked and shredded (I aim for ~3 oz per serving)
  • 4 medium zucchini, ends trimmed and cut in half vertically

Instructions

  1. Heat chicken stock over medium heat with onions, carrots, and garlic for ~30 minutes, or until the veggies are fork-tender.
  2. Season soup with salt and pepper and parsley.
  3. Run the zucchini halves through the spiralizer to make "noodles." Then give the pile of noodles a couple of chops with a knife so they aren't all 4 feet long.
  4. Add chicken and zucchini to the broth and heat through.

Notes

Yields: 4 generous servings

Source: Confections of a Foodie Bride

Estimated time: 45 minutes

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