Dish of the Day: The Reluctant Vegetarian’s recipe for No Carbs Courgette ‘Tagliatelle’ with a Smoked Chilli Sauce
I’ve just had my birthday and received a spiral slicer as a gift. If I hadn’t also got the biggest meat cleaver ever (sorry!) then this would have been, without a doubt, my best present. This recipe is the way forward if you’re trying to avoid carbs but miss indulging in a pasta-like dish. Seeing as I love pasta, this massively appeals to me. Nothing can beat a really simple tomato sauce made with great fresh, ripe ingredients.
Smoked Tomato, Garlic & Olive Sauce
1 x Red Onion – Cut into 1cm x 1cm cubes
1 x Medium red chilli – Finely sliced
100g x Pitted black olives
3 x Large cloves of garlic – Crushed and finely sliced
1 x Tin of good quality plum tomatoes
1 x Large red pepper
1 x Tbsp of sugar
3 x Dried whole chillies
1/2 x Tsp of smoked paprika
Salt & black pepper
2 x Big glugs of olive oil – To cook onions and garlic in
2 x Medium sized courgettes – Thoroughly washed
Bunch of rainbow chard – Thoroughly washed
1 x Nob of butter
Salt & pepper
Start with getting your tomato sauce cooking: You want this to cook for as long as possible. Begin by adding your finely diced onion, garlic, olives and red chilli to a generous amount of olive oil. Two glugs at least. Season with salt and pepper and cook on a medium heat for 10 minutes until the onion is translucent and caramelised.
Add your tin of tomatoes, paprika and tablespoon of sugar and let this cook for at least 30 minutes on a low heat. Cook for as long as possible, an hour or hour and a half will make the sauce even better. Make sure you check the seasoning before serving and add a handful of freshly chopped parsley plus extra fresh chilli.
Blacken your red pepper by either adding it directly to the gas on your hob or by grilling it in the oven so you get a nice chargrilled and sweet taste to the pepper. If you’re using gas, be careful when turning the pepper, making it blacken evenly. Be sure to use tongs.
Instead of the pasta, take your spiral slicer and twist the fresh uncooked courgette through it, so you end up with spaghetti like spirals of courgette. Cook these in a tiny amount of oil on a medium heat with a dash of salt for 2-3 minutes so they’re still nice and crunchy.
You’re ready to serve.
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