The start of summer has flown by, and I cannot believe how much has happened since I last shared a recipe! Alex and I moved to Queen Anne in the beginning of May, and it took me a little while to adjust to our new, smaller kitchen. Mise en place, the practice of preparing ingredients ahead of time in separate bowls, comes in handy in all cooking, but especially in a tiny prep area. I was inspired to make this recipe today, so that I could have gluten-free noodles ready when my Mom arrives for her Seattle visit! I set aside two zucchinis to make a fresh bowl of “zoodles” for her dinner.
We have been cooking and enjoying local Seattle foods, but our new place does not have a grill. I am really looking forward to late-summer grilling with my family when we gather at the beach! In honor of mid-summer, here is one of my favorite recipes to showcase what’s in season.
PCC supplies for a meaty pasta sauce.
Snap the dried ends off from stemmed asparagus, and just keep snapping stems into smaller pieces for cooking.
Try purple garlic if you find it.
Mise en place makes for seamless transitions while cooking.
Break up mushrooms into smaller pieces using your spoon or spatula.
This Lucini marinara has the greatest texture.
Hearty, colorful sauce is a staple in our home.
This meal used a lot of pots, but we have plenty of sauce leftover.
Fresh, bright flavors of the season.
Linguine topped with zucchini, topped with sauce, topped with cheese!
Turkey meat sauce is one of my go-to make ahead meals, and the addition of seasonal vegetables makes this dinner all the more enticing. I use fresh vegetables when I can, but this recipe could also work well with frozen mixed vegetables. Try different vegetables until you find your favorite! When asparagus is not in season, I tend to use broccoli in this recipe. Marinara sauce clings to broccoli’s texture, for a pleasing mouth-feel. This hearty sauce is the perfect addition to linguine or other noodles, and adding zucchini noodles makes for an especially bright dish.
I love the flavor of purple garlic, so give that a try if you can find it. Purple garlic is naturally sweet, and can be added later on in the cooking process. When using white garlic, add garlic, onions and peppers at the same time to soften the bite of the garlic flavor.
You will need:
1-2 T olive oil
1 medium onion, diced
1 orange bell pepper, diced
1 pound ground turkey
about 20 asparagus spears, snapped into 2-3 inch pieces
mushrooms (we used sliced crimini)
24 ounces tomato marinara sauce
4-5 cloves garlic, minced
Optional: hot red pepper flakes. Serve topped with fresh parmesan.
Heat two large saucepans over medium heat, and add olive oil or cooking spray (I like La Tourangelle Expeller-Pressed Grapeseed Oil for cooking). When your oil has warmed, add onion and peppers to one pan and turkey meat to the other. Break up turkey with a spoon as it cooks, to reach desired bite-size.
Stir onion and peppers and allow to soften for 3-4 minutes. Keep breaking up turkey and make sure it browns evenly.
Add asparagus and allow to cook for a few minutes more. Then, stir in a handful of mushrooms.
As soon as your turkey has browned, remove that pan from the heat.
Add tomato sauce to your veggie pan and turn the heat down to medium-low. Add cooked turkey to your sauce, and stir to coat.
Prepare pasta water or another pan for pasta or zucchini noodles. For this meal, we used a combination of the two.
At the final stage of sauce preparation, turn the heat to low and add your garlic, fresh basil and spices. Adding spices at the end showcases their bright flavors.
Alex and I spent a week apart in different parts of California, and with an anticipated 10 days apart coming up, we only wanted to spend dinners together this weekend! This is a glimpse of “Taylor in Your Kitchen” at the Taylor home! We got creative with more veggie noodles, and I switched up our usual turkey meat sauce recipe by adding steamed lentils, at the recommendation of one of the patients at the physical therapy clinic where I work – an anonymous “thank you!”
This recipe is fantastic for a quick weeknight meal. The sauce is easy to make once you get used to cooking with multiple pans simultaneously. To ease your transition to that stage of kitchen comfort, I recommend prepping all of the sauce ingredients before you start cooking. When the sauce is simmering, you can multitask more easily with the pasta and zucchini noodles. Pappardelle noodles cook in about four minutes, and while the water is boiling, you can make progress on the zucchini prep. Otherwise, prep all ingredients first until you get a hang of this recipe. This dish makes a satisfying vegetarian meal if you omit the turkey; the lentils lend staying power to the sauce.
Zucchini noodles and pappardelle noodles cooking at the same time
Zucchini strips steaming
Zucchini strips after steaming for about five minutes
Cooked zucchini noodles and pappardelle
Pappardelle and zucchini noodles topped with meat sauce and parmesan cheese
The pappardelle at the bottom tastes great with a forkful of zucchini noodles and meat sauce with lentils!
Wide Zucchini Noodles and Pappardelle and Meat Sauce – serves 4
For this recipe, I like to use a peeler for the zucchini instead of the spiralizer, to match the width of the pappardelle pasta. Zucchini noodles take about 5 – 7 minutes to cook down. Check out the gallery to see what the zucchini will look like as it cooks. You can also prep zucchini noodles quickly by microwaving a single serving for just 2 minutes – that’s perfect for leftover sauce.
You will need:
1 yellow onion
1 orange pepper
1 lb ground turkey meat
1 package steamed lentils – about 10 ounces
24 ounces of pasta sauce, your choice on flavor!
1 t garlic powder
1 t black pepper
1/2 t hot red pepper flakes
1 package of pappardelle pasta – about four 2 ounce servings
1/2 T salt
4 or 5 zucchini
1/2 T olive oil
Optional: parmesan cheese to serve
Peel the outside layer of zucchinis and discard. Keep peeling until you reach the zucchini seeds, and discard the center portion. Retain all zucchini strips – those will be your noodles.
Chop onion and yellow pepper(mini or bite-sized pieces). Heat a medium pan over medium-low heat, and spray with cooking spray. Add chopped onion and pepper pieces and stir occasionally while veggies cook. Your onions should start to become translucent.
Meanwhile, heat a medium pot over medium heat for the turkey and sauce.
Spray with cooking spray and brown turkey meat. Crush up the turkey meat and season with garlic, pepper and hot red pepper flakes.
While turkey is browning, start heating a pot of water for pasta. Add just a dash of salt to the water as you bring it to a boil.
Add your veggies to the turkey meat when the meat has cooked through completely. Stir to combine. Add pre-cooked lentils last.
Pour your pasta sauce over the meat, veggies and lentils. Stir and simmer for about 10-15 minutes over low heat until your pasta and noodles are ready.
Add pappardelle to boiling water, and reduce heat to medium-high. Stir occasionally to prevent sticking, and check tenderness after just four minutes. Drain as usual and stir in olive oil immediately.
Heat a medium pan over medium heat and spray with cooking spray. Add your pile of zucchini noodles, and cover with a lid. Stir occasionally until zucchini reaches desired tenderness.
Plate pappardelle pasta with an equal amount of zucchini noodles. Top with pasta sauce and parmesan cheese or more hot red pepper flakes.