After my blog post about leading with your Why, I felt like I should follow with a sort of ode to vegetables. If moving others to healthier eating habits is my Why, then getting you to look at a bowl of vegetables and think, "Gimme!" is my objective. Since I got super worked up about this bowl of vegetables, I really wanted to share it with you. Besides, it was inspired from a meal I used to make while living in my first college apartment and totally hit the mark. I ate this for multiple days in a row and am still thinking "More please!"
When I was a Sophomore in college, I moved into my first apartment. I had one of the best roommates ever. I cooked a lot. My parents supplied my kitchen with two Food Processors and a Immersion Blender. Making dinner was my favorite study break. Clearly, not much has changed.
Still, one of my favorite meals was a total "hack". It was easy to make, super cheap, and amazingly delicious. It was Spicy Sesame Noodles. Good cold or warm, those noodles stuck in my memory.
This version of that recipe has been reworked, sans pasta, so that I can enjoy that same dish, while getting some real nutrients! Number one reason why I love sitting down to a big bowl of veggies: I finish my meal feeling strong.
Zucchini noodles are not always the perfect replacement for pasta, but in this dish I found them quite satisfying. Since the spicy sesame sauce is good warm or cold, I left the noodles raw, which gave them an "al dente" texture. With a few crunchy broccoli florets, this dish is almost like a salad but tastes like so, so much more. My favorite way to eat it is with Salmon on top. Grilled or roasted salmon would work great, but canned salmon is cheaper and makes for a quick lunch!
What is your "power fuel"? What things make you feel strong?
Paleo Spicy Sesame Zoodles with Salmon:
1/4 cup soy sauce, tamari or coconut aminos
1 tablespoon fresh ginger, minced
1 tablespoon garlic, minced
1-3 teaspoons red pepper flakes (depending on spice preference)
1 tablespoon sesame oil
1 tablespoon honey or maple syrup
2 medium-sized zucchini
2 tablespoons sesame seeds
1/2 cup broccoli florets
2 six-ounce cans of salmon
Sesame seeds, red chile flakes, minced chives or cilantro for garnish
1. In a small sauce pan, combine the soy sauce, ginger, garlic, red chile flakes, sesame oil, and honey. Bring to a simmer over low heat, stirring occasionally to help the honey dissolve. Continue to allow this to simmer. The sauce will reduce a bit, and the flavors of the garlic, ginger and chili will infuse with the soy sauce.
2. Spiralize the zucchini ( I use this one, but any spiralizer will do. You can also use a vegetable peeler or simply julienne the zucchini if you have lots of patience). Divide the prepared zucchini into serving bowls.
3. Remove the sauce from the stove. Whisk it one last time and pour it over the zucchini noodles. Add the sesame seeds, and toss everything gently to coat it with the sauce. Break the broccoli florets into bite-sized pieces, and arrange them over the noodles.
4. Drain the canned salmon, and break up the meat with a fork before adding it to the top of each dish. Sprinkle with sesame seeds, red chile flakes, and chives/cilantro. Serve.