Tuesday, 17 March 2015

Spaghetti with zucchini, chilli flakes and lemon juice.

I have felt less than motivated the past week and a bit... no food cravings, inspiration or gusto to want to make a thing to be honest. I am happy to eat (that will probably never stop) but my cravings and want to make anything specific has gone missing. I am currently on the hunt for it...

It definitely didn't help when I thought I'd make myself a proper breakfast on Saturday and failed at boiling an egg. Yes you read that right. I can't boil an egg... according to my attempts on Saturday. I was excited that my want for cooking was on the return and the thought of a soft boiled egg on a freshly toasted english muffin got me excited! This soon turned into a feeling of failure when I cracked the top off my (what I thought was perfectly boiled) egg and scooped out my running yoke to only watch as a mostly raw egg plopped out and pooled around my nicely buttered english muffin. It's mostly cooked...it's mostly cooked....so I tried to tell myself. But the texture of slimy raw egg that had made my english muffin soggy was too much for me to get over and my breakfast ended up in the bin. I gave up and cleaned my teeth and left the house feeling like a failure.

How can I have a cooking blog when I can't even boil an egg.

On a more positive note though, I can boil pasta. Hooray for pasta!

Think positive. Think positive. Think positive.

One night last week when I was home alone and trying to think of something kinda healthy-ish to eat for dinner and required the least amount of dishes to wash up I came up with this. Spaghetti with grated zucchini, chilli flakes and lemon juice. It was quick, fresh and full of flavour...perfect midweek meal even if you feel like a cooking failure you can do this. You don't need to cook the sauce for a start which means there is already one less pot to clean so we are already winning!

Spaghetti with zucchini, chilli flakes and lemon juice | salt sugar and i

I also discovered a little trick... if you pop two small (peeled) garlic cloves into the boiling water the same time as your pasta they go soft and mild and mushy and yum.

While thats all cooking grate 2 small zucchini's on a box grater, juice of half a juicy lemon, a generous pinch of chilli flakes, some chopped herbs if you have them in the fridge (parsley or basil) but if you don't do not stress and wait until your pasta is ready.

Fishing out the garlic cloves is the hardest part of this whole dinner. I suggest fishing them out before you drain the pasta because they seem to float but once you've drained the pasta they get lost in all the strands of spaghetti.

Once you've finished fishing, squash the garlic cloves with the back of a fork and add everything back into the pot you cooked the pasta in, add a splash of extra virgin olive oil, a nob of butter, a good seasoning of salt and freshly ground black pepper and finish with some parmesan cheese.

This made enough for 2 people or one greedy person who just wants to eats it straight out of the pot :)

Spaghetti with zucchini, chilli flakes and lemon juice | salt sugar and i

Spaghetti with zucchini, chilli flakes and lemon juice.

Serves 2 people - or one greedy person

250g dried spaghetti
2 small zucchini's
2 small cloves of garlic
a splash of extra virgin olive oil
nob of butter
a generous pinch of chilli flakes
juice of half a juicy lemon
roughly 2 tablespoons of roughly chopped basil or parsley (optional)
salt and pepper, to taste
grated parmesan cheese, to serve

- Throw your spaghetti and peeled garlic cloves into a pot of boiling salted water and cook according to packet instructions or until pasta is al dente.

- Meanwhile grate your zucchini using a box grater (or any grater you have) and get all your other ingredients ready to go.

- Fish out your garlic cloves just before you drain your pasta then place the drained pasta back in the pot with a good splash of extra virgin olive oil and a nob of butter. Squash the garlic cloves using the back of a fork until they are a paste then add them along with the chilli flakes, lemon juice and herbs (if using) to the pot with the pasta.

- Turn the heat on low for about 2-3 minutes just so the zucchini warms through a little bit more.

- Season with salt and pepper and serve with parmesan cheese sprinkled on top... either in a bowl or eat directly from the pot.

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