Healthy healthy healthy healthy! That’s the keyword in this recipe. Well that, and gluten-free! Now please don’t go running away if you’re not interested in gluten-free or 100% vegetarian recipes, because you can still use this recipe as a base for a ‘still healthy but not so vegetarian’ recipe, by simply adding some chicken or wild caught salmon. I don’t eat meals like this very often myself, but I decided to challenge myself and come up with something 100% vegetarian with nothing but herbs and vegetables. I had actually made zucchini noodles once before and I liked them a lot, but back then I added some meat to it, which I didn’t want to do this time around so I went to look for other ingredients to add to this recipe.
I actually got my inspiration for pan-fried eggplant from my sister, who is cooking quite a lot recently and served these eggplants while I was having diner over at my family’s house. I liked the flavor of it a lot and since it goes really well with zucchini too, I decided to add it to this recipe. Last but not least i’ve gone for some very basic cherry tomatoes, roasted in the oven until they popped. To make them a bit more special, I rolled them around in sesame seeds, that way there’s also a bit of a crunchy texture present in this dish as well.
Serves: 2 people
- 1 large yellow zucchini
- 1 large green zucchini
- 1 eggplant/aubergine
- 250g cherry tomatoes
- olive oil
- 2 tablespoons of sesame seeds
- couple of basil leaves
- 1/2 teaspoon of oregano
- 1/2 teaspoon of thyme
Needed: a vegetable julienne slicer, vegetable spiralizer or a mandoline with julienne blades
Put the cherry tomatoes along with the sesame seeds and 2 tablespoons of olive oil in an ovenproof dish. Swirl all the ingredients around so the tomatoes are lightly covered in oil and the sesame seeds will stick to them as much as possible. Put them in the oven at 190°C for 30 minutes or until the skin of the tomatoes has burst.
Next thing we’re going to do is to peel the zucchinis, cut the ends off and then cut them into long thin noodles. The easiest way to cut zucchinis using a julienne slicer is to switch sides often, rather than staying on the same side. So slice it up from top to bottom on the front a couple of times, then do the same on the back, then switch to the sides and so on until you’ve reached the core.
All you have to do for the eggplant is slice it up in slices of about 1cm.
Heat up some olive oil in a pan and add the zucchini along with some pepper. Cook the zucchini at high heat for about 7-10 minutes. Set aside and heat up olive oil for our eggplants! Add the thyme and oregano before you add a couple of slices of eggplant. Make sure the oil is hot before you add the eggplant because otherwise it’ll just soak up the oil. Don’t add all the slices at once, this will take away the heat and the eggplant won’t be properly cooked. If needed, add some more olive oil before your next batch but always remember it has to be hot before you add some more slices.
Serve everything with a couple of fresh basil leaves.