Spaghetti Puttanesca with Matchstick Zucchini


Spaghetti Puttanesca



“By posting this recipe I am entering a recipe contest sponsored by the National Pasta Association and am eligible to win prizes associated with the contest. I was not compensated for my time.”

Have you every noticed that there seems to be a day or a month for just about every thing? There’s Take Your Kid to Work Day, Secretary’s Day, and Talk Like a Pirate Day. There are also month long celebrations, too. October happens to be National Pasta Month, so along with the Recipe Redux I am ready to cook up some pasta.

Let’s face it, pasta has been getting a bad rap lately. With the craze of the Paleo diet that eliminates starch, the new CDC diet recommendations calling for more vegetables, and more people eating a gluten free diet, I could be wrong, but it seems to me that there is less space for carbs like pasta. Well, pasta is great! Why give up something that is so enjoyable to eat? Really. Whole grain pasta is a good source of tryptophan that helps convert to seritonin, which is key to fighting insomnia, depression, and irritability. And whole grains help a person to feel full longer.

My solution is to have the pasta and eat it too. Add some vegetables into the mix for a more balanced diet. In this way you still get the wonderful taste pasta, with all the of benefits of whole grains and vegetables.

This recipe for Spaghetti Puttanesca with Matchstick Zucchini is a quick and easy meal to make for the busy family. My favorite way to eat it is paired with a side salad, and for heartier fare it can be paired with chicken or beef for a delicious protein rich healthy meal. Omit the anchovies for the vegetarian and vegan options.

References: – whole-grains-good-mood-food – whole-grains-and-other-complex-carbs-elevate-calming-serotonin

Spaghetti Puttanesca with Matchstick Zucchini

Cook Time: 8 minutes

Total Time: 30 minutes

5 Servings

Spaghetti Puttanesca with Matchstick Zucchini


  • 10 ounces dry whole grain pasta
  • 3 medium zucchini
  • 1-1/2 tablespoons pitted and chopped black olives
  • 1 can anchovies, about 6 filets, finely chopped
  • 1 tablespoon cappers, chopped
  • 1/8 teaspoon red pepper flakes
  • 1-1/2 tablespoons chopped green onion
  • 1-1/2 teaspoons minced garlic
  • 1-1/2 tablespoons minced parsley
  • 1 cup cooked homemade tomato sauce, or your favorite brand
  • ¼ pound feta cheese, crumbled


  1. Wash the zucchini and cut off the ends of the so they measure about 5 inches long.
  2. Use a mandolin, or a knife and your good judgment to eyeball where you make your cuts, and slice the zucchini to 3/8 inch thickness (a little less than ¼ inch).
  3. Stack up a few slices of the zucchini and slice along the length to make long matchsticks. Set the zucchini aside.
  4. Put on a small pot of lightly salted water to boil. (Later you will lightly boil the zucchini.)
  5. Cook the pasta.
  6. While the spaghetti is cooking, Place 1-1/2 tablespoons olive oil in a skillet and then add the garlic, stir for 15 seconds and then add the red pepper flakes, anchovies, black olives, green onion, oregano, parsley and tomato sauce. Stir well to mix and then turn off the heat.
  7. Cook the zucchini in the boiling water just until tender, about 40 seconds, and then strain. Add the zucchini to the tomato mixture.
  8. Strain the pasta when the spaghetti is at the al dente stage, still slightly firm to the bite. Place the pasta in a large serving bowl, and to it add the zucchini tomato mixture. Stir well to mix. Serve in pasta bowls and top with the crumbled feta cheese.

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