Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Ham and Zucchini Carbonara

Back into the swing of menu planning this week as I am back on my weight loss journey now that the silly season is officially over with the end being marked by my birthday on Saturday and the fact that I am also armed with a new cookbook, Weight Watchers Cook Simple, I decided we had to try this pasta dish which looked delish just looking at the picture.

My kids both adore pasta carbonara so I was interested to see how they would like the change of ingredients with using ham and zucchini as the base flavours. I have to say that like with normal Carbonara this recipe was very easy to make and very quick to cook, with the whole dish on the table in under 30 minutes.

I didn't find it neither as cheesy or as eggy as a normal carbonara but saying this the dish itself did have a really nice flavour and I really enjoyed the hint of nutmeg. The serving sizes are large and very filling. Overall it is a weeknight winner in our house.

Ham and Zucchini Carbonara
(recipe sourced from WW Cook Simple)

Serves: 4
ProPoints per serve: 10

250 grams spaghetti
2 teaspoons olive oil
1 small brown onion, finely chopped
2 garlic cloves, crushed
2 medium zucchini, coarsely grated
150 grams sliced lean leg ham, fat trimmed, cut into thin strips
1 teaspoon cornflour
1 tablespoon cold water
1 cup evaporated skim milk
1 egg
25 grams finely grated parmesan cheese
freshly ground black pepper
pinch of nutmeg

Cook pasta in a large saucepan of boiling salted water, following packet instructions, or until just tender. Drain and return to the pan.

Meanwhile, heat oil in a large non stick frying pan over medium heat. Cook onion, stirring occasionally, for 5 minutes or until softenend. Add garlic and zucchini and cook, stirring, for 3 minutes or until zucchini is just tender. Add ham and stir to combine.

Combine cornflour and water in a small bowl. Whisk milk, egg and parmesan in a medium jug. Add egg mixture and cornflour mixture to pan and bring to the boil. Reduce heat to low and simmer, uncovered, for 2 - 3 minutes or sauce slightly thickens.

Add zucchini mixture to pasta. Season with salt, pepper and nutmeg. Toss to combine. Serve.

As I mentioned I recently had a birthday - infact it was my 40th birthday and I only wanted one thing as a gift and that was a Canon Digital Camera. I set up a donation envelope system with my invitations and once my party was over I counted the money to find that I had enough money to buy the camera of my dreams - only problem was that the camera of my dreams was sold out so I had to settle for the next model up.... damn shame that.

Needless to say that I am now the very happy owner of a Canon EOS 60D complete with twin lenses!!

Now I am praying that photos of my food dishes will look much better now than using my small point and shoot that I have owned for years. I am pretty sure they will - please let me know what you think.

(click here for a printable version of this recipe)


Denise said...

Happy 40th birthday!! This is my celebration YEAR as I just turned 40 on Sept 11th. Felt wierd...but I think it turned out to be a HUGE blessing as I had been dreading the year and a half prior!! LOL! So glad to have it behind me. It's been a great birthday year so far.

What a great idea you had about the donation system to get your camera. I would LOVE a DSLR, but last spring when camera shopping...it just wasn't in the budget to make the jump from point and shoot. I did however get a really nice PS camera...they were discontinuing to go to the next model so I got it under half the price, plus the sale running...got a $400 camera for $179!! I had researched and researched, and this one is good because it has low lighting capabilities...I have been VERY happy with the pictures it has been producing. Hopefully one day I'll get to move up!!

Happy New Year!!

Denise @ Creative Kitchen

redkathy said...

Happy Birthday! Love the pasta and the camera. I'm a huge fan of both. My son is a photographer and uses nothing but Canon, they served him well. He owns a 50D and a 20D. Says when he buys a new one this year I get his 20D woo hoo!

I'm going to have to try a pinch of nutmeg in pasta, sounds very interesting.

Tv Food and Drink said...

Hooray for the camera! A food blogger must have a powerful pic snapper and lots and lots of options for shooting. I look forward to all the upgraded pics! - Gary

Mary Bergfeld said...

Happy Birthday! I hope you had a fantastic day. Your pasta looks wonderful, but then everything else on your blog looks wonderful as well. I really enjoy my visits here. Have a great day. Blessings...Mary

Chef E said...

I hear so much about WW, so I have to check this out!

I made a low calorie carbonara recently, and love this idea to use zucchini!