Many need a spaghetti substitute especially when first decreasing gluten and grain consumption, and instead are increasing vegetable consumption. A Paderno Spiralizer (this Williams-Sonoma website has a nice How-To use video) is what I use to make vegetable spiralizer noodles. There are other spiralizer brands but I find the three blade Paderno to not be cost prohibitive (shop online), and it has lasted through many uses.
Vegetable noodles is a neat trick for spaghetti sides, be it scampi or marinara sauce based. Recipes abound on the internet using spiralizer vegetable noodles, but a few of my favorites are:
- 2 medium sized zucchinis, peeled and spiralized into noodles.
- 2 teaspoons coconut oil
- 1/2 cup finely chopped onion
- 1 clove garlic, chopped
- 2 1/2 cups chopped tomatoes (fresh is always preferred, but I've used Jovial 100% Organic whole peeled tomatoes since they are in glass though I don't have a letter for SCD legality, others use Cento's brand which is SCD legal but read labels as some versions contains illegals)
- 2 cups boneless chicken breast halves, cooked and cubed
- 1/4 cup chopped fresh basil
- 1/2 teaspoon Himalayan or sea salt
- 1/8 teaspoon McIlhenny Co. Tabasco hot pepper sauce (SCD legal)
- 1/4 cup freshly shredded Parmesan cheese (from a whole block for SCD legal)
- Preheat the oven to 200 F.
- Spread the zucchini noodles thinly (about 1/2 inch deep) on a cookie sheet lined with a paper towel; place in the oven and dehydrate somewhat for 30 to 40 minutes.
- In the meantime, melt the coconut oil in a large cast-iron or stainless steel skillet, over medium-high heat. Add the onions and garlic and saute till just tender.
- Stir in the tomatoes, chicken, basil, salt and the hot pepper sauce.
- Remove the noodles from the oven and gently pat with paper towels to remove remaining liquid. Gently stir the noodles into the tomato mixture.
- Reduce the heat to medium, and cover the skillet; simmer for about 5 minutes, stirring frequently, until mixture is hot and tomatoes are soft.
- Plate the pasta and top with freshly grated Parmesan cheese.
Another favorite (PALEO/SCD/GAPS friendly) is the Skinny Shrimp Scampi with Zucchini Noodles:
Here’s another good YouTube by Danielle Walker from the blog Against All Grain, demonstrating just how easy it is to make zucchini noodles using the Paderno vegetable spiralizer:
Vegetable Noodles Can Replace Arsenic Rice Based Noodles (another plus)
So now you know how you can add in vegetable noodles instead of grain based noodles for any recipe needing noodles. Also worth noting, increasing vegetable consumption and variety has the biggest positive impact on the gut microbiome (see the post, OPTIMAL MICROBIOME DIET FROM AMERICAN GUT DATA). And the kidos love these dishes… always an added bonus.
The Trouble with Rice and Arsenic
As you have likely heard, the rice based versions have come under scrutiny for arsenic load contaminants, no matter if we’re talking brown rice or white rice. And the brown rice syrup products also are taking a hit due to the arsenic loading of the brown rice. If you have not yet seen the latest issue of Consumer Reports (January 2015) (also found at “How much arsenic is in your rice? Consumer Reports’ new data and guidelines are important for everyone but especially for gluten avoiders,” published November 2014 with the full report here) here’s the lowdown from The Ohio State, Department of Horticulture and Crop Science, Food Safety News, (scroll down this newsletter till you see the section titled):
Consumer Reports (CR) today issued new consumption guidelines for inorganic arsenic (IA) in rice and other grains. While past reports on the subject by CR and others have been complex and academic, this one is consumer friendly.
CR says its new guidelines were developed in response to consumer questions after its 2012 study found measurable levels of IA in all 60 rice varieties and rice products it tested. Consumers wanted to know whether there were types of rice that are lower in arsenic and whether other grains also contain arsenic.
In today’s new report, which has gone to press in the organization’s magazine, the world’s largest independent product-testing organization attempts to answer those questions based on its latest analysis of data from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA).
To help both children and adults reduce their exposure to arsenic without eliminating rice from their diets, CR has developed a point system for managing rice exposure. CR says children should rarely eat hot rice cereal or rice pasta and those under the age of five should not replace milk with rice drinks based on elevated arsenic levels.
In its 2012 work, CR found that the IA content of rices varies greatly depending on the type and where it was grown. CR has identified better choices with much lower levels of inorganic arsenic, including white basmati rice from India, Pakistan or California and sushi rice grown in the United States.
CR tests also found lower arsenic options for other grains such as amaranth, millet, and quinoa.
The full report, “Arsenic in Your Rice: The Latest,” is available online at ConsumerReports.org and in the January 2015 issue of Consumer Reports, which hits newsstands next week.
“We are very pleased to learn that there are lower arsenic choices when it comes to rice and alternative grains,” said Dr. Urvashi Rangan, Director of Consumer Safety and Sustainability at Consumer Reports, in a press release. “This is great news for consumers who can now use our information to make better decisions for themselves and their families and reinforces our advice to vary your grains.”
“In the meantime, we continue to call on the FDA to set standards for arsenic in rice-based foods and are particularly concerned about the effects on children.”
Consumer Reports’ Findings and Recommendations
Consumer Reports tested 128 samples of basmati, jasmine and sushi rice for arsenic and combined the results with findings from its 2012 tests and data from the FDA’s analysis of arsenic in rice for a total of 697 samples. The tests showed that the inorganic arsenic content of rice varies greatly depending on the type of rice and where it was grown.
CR also looked at IA levels in 114 samples of non-rice grains and analyzed FDA data on the IA content of 656 processed rice-containing products.
Below are some important findings based on CR’s new analysis:
- White basmati rice from California, India and Pakistan and sushi rice from the U.S. carry, on average, half the amount of arsenic than that found in most other types of rice. Brown rice has 80 percent more IA on average than white rice of the same type.
- Brown basmati from California, India, or Pakistan is the best choice because it has about a third less IA than other brown rices.
- All types of rice (except sushi and quick-cooking) with a label indicating they’re from Arkansas, Louisiana or Texas had the highest levels of IA in Consumer Reports’ tests. White rices from California have 38 percent less IA than white rice from other parts of the country.
- Organic rice takes up arsenic the same way conventional rices do, so don’t rely on organic to have less arsenic.
- Gluten-free grains, including amaranth, quinoa, buckwheat, millet and polenta (or grits) have much lower average levels of IA. Bulgur, barley and farro, which contain gluten, also have very little arsenic. Consumer Reports recommends that consumers vary the type of grains they eat.
Founded in 1936, Consumer Reports has over 8 million subscribers to its magazine, website and other publications. Its advocacy division, Consumers Union, works for health reform, food and product safety, financial reform and other consumer issues in Washington, D.C., the states, and in the marketplace.
Lastly I want to share the Ohio State, Department of Horticulture and Crop Science, Food Safety News, interesting lead-in article concerning the criminal trials for the defendants found guilty in the Peanut Corporation salmonella case that some may find interesting. While this has nothing to do with spiralizer noodles, as an x-criminal attorney, I am taking the liberty of believing individual defendant food adulteration liability enlightenment among foodies likely could be worth a definite share:
“After the jury verdicts came in for the Peanut Corporation of American criminal trial two months ago, U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder said the trial in Albany, GA showed how “any individual or company that puts the health of consumers at risk by criminally selling tainted food will be caught, prosecuted, and held accountable to the fullest extent of the law.”
“But getting to the part where they hold the defendants—those who went to trial and those who entered into plea bargains with the government — is taking a longer than expected. And since most of the action since the trial has proceeded in secret, the public has been left in the dark about what’s going on…”
“What is known is that the defendants have requested acquittals from the judge on the charges for which the jury found them guilty, with backup requests for new trials. A request for a new trial filed jointly by brothers Stewart and Michael Parnell raises questions about whether one or more jurors searched the Internet to find out more about the Salmonella outbreak that was mentioned often during the trial.”
“The government prosecution team is working to protect the jury verdicts.”
“Stewart Parnell, who owned PCA, his brother, the peanut broker who did deals involving the company and Mary Wilkerson, quality assurance manger for the PCA peanut processing plant at Blakely, GA, were found guilty jury verdicts after the trial.”
“Daniel Kilgore and Samuel Lightsey, respectively the operations manger and plant manger at the Blakely, GA plant, testified at the trial for the government after reaching plea agreements with the prosecution.”
“No sentencing date has yet been scheduled for any of the defendants.”
“The jury convicted 60-year-old Stewart Parnell of all but one charge against him, including multiple counts of conspiracy, mail fraud, wire fraud, the sale of misbranded and adulterated food and obstruction of justice.”
“Parnell faces up to two to three decades in federal prison.”
“Michael Parnell, age 55, was convicted of multiple counts of conspiracy, mail fraud, wire fraud and the sale of misbranded food.”
“Wilkerson was convicted of one of the two charges of obstruction of justice filed against her.”
Always good to see that those responsible for the safety of our food system will need to answer for adulteration of the food we rely upon to be safe.
In health through awareness,