Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Jamie Oliver's (Zucchini) Spaghetti with Sweet Cherry Tomatoes, Marjoram and Extra Virgin Olive Oil

I bought a new toy recently, this spiralizer, and I have been having fun making and enjoying raw zucchini noodles. I will probably branch out from zucchini at some point, but since they are so plentiful and cheap, and make tasty spaghetti, they are my noodle of choice at the moment. ;-) Of course I still love my pasta, but having a lighter veggie option is fun too. I have had my "noodles" with different pestos and with my favorite Jamie Oliver's Cherry Tomato, Caper and Balsamic Sauce (BTW: that sauce won a lot of fans at Whole Foods when I cooked it and added the zucchini noodles for a demo).

Since it is potluck week at I Heart Cooking Clubs, I decided to go with another of Jamie's pasta sauces and try the Spaghetti with Sweet Cherry Tomatoes, Marjoram and Extra Virgin Olive Oil, replacing the spaghetti with zucchini noodles. With local zucchini and tomatoes from the farmers market and marjoram from my herb garden, it is fresh, light, and perfect for summer.

Jamie says, "When tomatoes are good, this is super nice. It’s a warm dish as opposed to hot, and it is even great when cold as a salad for picnics."

Sweet Cherry Tomatoes, Marjoram and Extra Virgin Olive Oil
From "Happy Days with the Naked Chef" by Jamie Oliver
(Serves 4)

1 lb dried spaghetti, spaghettini or linguine (I used my spiralizer to make zucchini noodles)
11-14 oz ripe cherry tomatoes, red and yellow
2 good handfuls of fresh marjoram or basil, leaves picked
6-8 glugs extra virgin olive oil
1 clove of garlic, peeled and finely sliced
1 Tbsp white or red wine vinegar
sea salt and freshly ground black pepper

Put your pasta into a large pot of salted boiling water and cook until al dente (check the package for cooking time). While it’s cooking, halve the tomatoes, put them into a large bowl, and add your herbs, olive oil, garlic and vinegar. Season to taste, and scrunch with your hands to slightly mush the tomatoes. This can sit now until the pasta’s ready. Drain the pasta, and while still steaming hot mix well with the tomatoes, check the seasoning and serve. Easy peasy.

Notes/Results: A very simple sauce with a lot of flavor. The sweetness of the cherry tomatoes combines well with the herbal, citrus notes of the marjoram (similar to oregano but more delicate in flavor). I did reduce the olive oil--less is needed to coat the veggie noodles than is needed for pasta. The sauce would be excellent with regular pasta noodles, but it really works really well with the zucchini noodles too, making this a lighter and lower calorie dish. It's a simple way to enjoy raw food and takes just minutes to put on the table. Although the capers in Jamie's other sauce still have my heart and I like its warmth with the raw zucchini noodles, this is a tasty second and I would make it again.

You can check out what the other IHCC participants made for their potluck creations by going to the post here and following the links.


  1. I want a spiral slicer! That looks amazing (and super healthy - I should come to your place and you can put me on a diet).

  2. Oh I SO want a spiralizer after seeing this! I would probably do half and half, zucchini and regular pasta, but with those cute cherry tomatoes, I know it must be delicious!

  3. Love the idea of zucchini noodles, such a great dish!

  4. Okay, so I've never heard of a spiralizer and I feel like I'm missing out on something! Those zucchini noodles look just like regular noodles. I love the sound of the tomato, marjoram and EVOO sauce but like you I think I'd like the caper and balsamic sauce just a little bit more. Gorgeous plate, Deb!

  5. This is awesome. Love everything about it! I wish I had known about spiralizers when I had arm loads of zucchini. Next year!

  6. Oh, well how fun is that...I want one! Delicious, healthy meal option...want one ;)

  7. The spiralizer is genius. This looks fantastic and fresh.

  8. I need a spiralizer in my life! Zucchini noodles are one of my favorites - I love how the fresh, simple flavors shine here!

  9. simpy.food--thank you! ;-)

    Foodycat--for under $20 it is a lot of fun. ;-) Come over anytime--you don't have to diet. ;-)

    Joanne--it is good half and half with pasta too--when you really need the real thing. ;-)

    5 Star Foodie--thanks! ;-)

    Kim--I was seeing the spiralizer a lot in the raw cookbooks I have so for less than $20 I had to try it. Capers in the sauce always win! ;-)

    MM--we still have plenty of zukes here but the spiralizer works on other hard veggies too.

    girlichef--it is a fun little tool.

    Ryan--thanks! And thanks for stopping by. ;-)

    Reeni--you do need one! ;-)

  10. Spiralizer! How cool is that!!! Love the addition of marjoram. Don't see it being used much these days and it really does add a unique touch.

    Thanks for sharing, Deb...

  11. Spiralizer...that's something I'd have trouble saying after a glass of wine. Neat tool though.....this is sure a good one for Meatless Monday!

  12. That looks like a burst of deliciousness right from the garden...yum :)

  13. Wonderful! I have a spiralizer somewhere - you have inspired me to dig it up. What great summer flavours. And I could use some lightening up after the carbonara. ;-)


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