If you want to enjoy your favorite pasta sauce over something that is low carb and won’t fill you up as much, Zucchini Ribbons are the way to go!
If you are eating gluten free then this is an obvious choice for you as well.
I love the flavor combination of Italian sausage with onion, garlic, sun dried tomatoes, mushrooms and basil. It is so classic and perfect.
I used some of my frozen chicken stock in the photo with the sausage.
If you wanted to make this dish vegetarian, you could just make it without the Italian sausage and use vegie stock instead of the chicken. The vegie flavors would still be wonderfully assertive and very Italian.
I have made the zucchini ribbons using both a cheese slicer and a vegie peeler. The nice thing about using the cheese slicer is that the ribbons turn out wider.
I shared this recipe with Monday Mania at The Healthy Home Economist, Homemaker Monday at 11th Heaven’s Homemaking Haven, Hearth And Soul Hop at A Moderate Life, Tasty Tuesdays at 33 Shades Of Green, Tuesday Night Supper Club at Fudge Ripple, Real Food Wednesday at Kelly The Kitchen Kop, Full Plate Thursdays at Miz Helen’s Country Cottage, Simple Lives Thursday at A Little Bit Of Spain In Iowa, Pennywise Platter Thursday at The Nourishing Gourmet, Fight Back Friday at Food renegade
Italian Sausage Sauce On Zucchini Ribbon “Pasta”
Prep all of your vegies before starting your sauce
3 cups onion, sliced into slivers (about 1 and 1/2 onions)
6 cloves garlic, sliced
1/4 cup sundried tomatoes, chopped (I use oil packed)
1/4 cup fresh basil, chopped fine
8 ounces mushrooms, sliced
1 small bulb fennel (anise), sliced in strips to match onion (I didn’t have one to use for photos but if you can get one that’s fresh, it’s great in here)
2 tablespoons parsley, minced
fresh baby spinach leaves to taste (several handfuls- I guess I didn’t measure, oops!)
When you have the vegies all ready then remove the Italian sausage from it’s casing and chop into small pieces and set aside.
1 pound Italian sausage (I used mild but use hot if you prefer)
You will need about 4-6 medium sized zucchini for the ribbons. You can prep the ribbons while the sauce is cooking down.
Trim the ends off of the zucchini then use a cheese slicer or vegie peeler to cut long thin strips from all around the zucchini. Stop cutting strips when you reach the seeds in the center. When your sauce is completely done, saute the zucchini strips in a very minimal amount of olive or grapeseed oil- just enough to keep it from sticking to the pan, but you don’t want the zucchini to be oily. Be sure to wait until the last possible moment to heat the zucchini because it will cool quickly and you want it to be hot when you serve it with the sauce.
To make the sauce:
In a large saute pan , heat 1 tablespoon of olive oil (I always smell any oil before using to make sure it has not gone rancid)
Add fennel strips first if you are using them. Saute for about 3 minutes then add the onions, garlic and sun dried tomatoes. Cook for 2-3 minutes then deglaze the pan with 2 tablespoons of dry white wine (I use Johannesburg Reisling with the lowest amount of alcohol). Stir to incorporate the browned bits from the pan into the saute then add the sliced mushrooms and black pepper to taste.
Deglaze the pan another time or two with 2 tablespoons white wine
Cook for a couple of minutes then remove mixture from the heat and place in a bowl so you can use the same pan for the sausage.
Heat 1 tablespoon olive oil in the empty pan then add the cut up Italian sausage.
Add 3/4 teaspoon dry basil
and 3/4 teaspoon fennel seeds
Brown the sausage until it is at least halfway done. Spoon off excess fat, if any. You can leave a tablespoon or so- it will add to the flavor.
When sausage is halfway done, add 1 and 1/2 cups chicken stock to it. Simmer the stock until it reduces down, leaving just enough to make some sauce for the dish.
Add the vegies back in at this point.
Add the fresh parsley, basil and spinach and cook just enough to soften the spinach and shrink it a little bit.
Add a couple of tablespoons of gluten free flour to the sauce at the end to thicken it some.
Saute your prepped zucchini ribbons in another pan until just slightly softened and warmed (it won’t take much!)
Serve the sauce over the zucchini ribbons and enjoy!
I plan on this recipe making enough to serve 2 people and it gives us some nice leftovers as well.
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