Courgette ‘tagliatelle’ with rosemary cheese sauce
I’m not necessarily into Banting, but I’m all for upping the veggies and not overdoing refined carbohydrates.
This recipe came about because I had some courgettes lurking in the fridge and I wanted to use them up. I was feeling far too lazy to make ‘spaghetti’ (which you can do using a spiraliser, a julienne grater, a sharp knife and plenty of patience, or by buying ready-cut courgette spaghetti from a growing number of supermarkets like Woolies or Pick-n-Pay), so I simply sliced them. The result was a more satisfying spoonful, in my humble opinion.
For the kitchen-illiterate: courgette, zucchini and baby marrow are all different names for the same veggie.
Cut about 400g courgettes into 1 cm slices.
Place courgettes in a single layer on a greased baking tray and brush with up to 60 ml olive oil. Season with salt and pepper and bake for 10-15 minutes at 180° C until soft and going ever so slightly crispy on the edges. You could probably steam or microwave the ‘pasta’, but I love the flavour and texture of oven-roasted, olive-oily veggies.
Meanwhile, start on the sauce by melting 50 g butter in a pan and mixing in 50 g flour to form a roux (fancy word for paste in this context).
Add 1 tablespoon chopped rosemary (fresh or dried, whatever you’ve got on hand) and cook for 2 minutes.
GRADUALLY – and you need to be patient here – add up to 500 ml milk (I used full cream, you can try other varieties) in small pours, stirring well to incorporate all the milk into the roux before adding more. This GRADUAL mixing in of the milk is what will prevent lumps and give you a smooth, glossy sauce. (If you do get lumps, use a whisk to beat them out.) Cook the sauce for 5-10 minutes to thicken, then season with salt and pepper (a sprinkle of cayenne pepper or mustard powder wouldn’t go amiss here if you like a bite.)
Stir in 1 cup of grated cheese. (You can use any cheese you like – or have around – for this. Harder cheeses like parmesan will give a more pronounced flavour, while softer varieties like mozzarella will result in a gooier, unctuous texture)
Plate the ‘tagliatelle’ and nap with the cheese sauce (I’ve always wanted to say that! 🙂 )
MIX IT UP
This sauce would work just as well on steamed green beans or skinny sweet potato chips (baked not fried).