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Some of us could easily eat pasta for dinner every night. But pasta certainly isn’t the healthiest meal to eat on repeat. Martha Stewart, however, showed how to make pasta carbonara a bit healthier using sautéed zucchini as a replacement for two-thirds of the pasta. And she also shared how to make your carbonara sauce extra creamy to disguise the fact that you’re getting your veggies in.
“Sautéed zucchini is a delicious way to make a rich dish like carbonara a little healthier—this recipe for Zucchini Carbonara uses two parts vegetable to one part pasta,” Stewart’s Instagram caption reads.
The recipe tells you to cut the zucchini into long matchsticks to match your pasta, but you can also use a julienne peeler or mandoline to achieve super-thin strips. Or, sub out all your pasta for zucchini noodles, which you can make with a spiralizer like this one
Briefton’s 5-Blade Vegetable Spiralizer
“Another trick: Don’t skimp on the extra egg yolk,” Stewart’s caption continues. “The addition helps emulsify the sauce, so it reaches optimum creaminess and renders a flawless carbonara copy.”
A post shared by Martha Stewart (@marthastewart)
Despite the healthy addition of the zucchini, Stewart’s carbonara comes together just like the classic. Garlic and pancetta are fried in olive oil until the pancetta is crisp. Then add the zucchini to the pan and let it cook until tender.
While the zucchini is cooking, you can also boil your regular pasta, and then whisk together your egg, extra yolk, cheese, lemon zest, salt, and pepper. You’ll temper this mixture with pasta water and then eventually add the egg mix into the zucchini pan, cooking over medium heat and adding more pasta water as needed to make a creamy sauce.
Once that perfect consistency has been achieved, you’re ready to eat! Pour the sauce over your cooked pasta and add basil and more cheese before diving in. Check out Stewart’s full recipe here for more detailed instructions and enjoy this (semi) guilt-free meal!
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