Sur La Table Spiral Slicer
I love kitchen gadgets. They make food preparation so much more interesting and can give a creative twist to foods that have grown too comfortable, don’t they? It’s like a re-style on food! The Sur La Table Spiral Slicer helped me do just that.
When I first got it out of its box, I was a bit skeptical of its light, plastic construction. There were no written instructions, so I spent some time looking at all the parts of the tool. You have the main piece that houses the stand and the winder along with three attachable blade cartridges that slide into the main unit – one for making ribbons, one for small spirals and one for larger spirals. There is a shelf under the main platform for storing the two blades you currently are not currently using.
When I finally started using the slicer, I was pleasantly surprised at how sharp the blades were, and that made spiraling all (and I do mean “all”) the produce that I tested very easy. Time will tell how well this device will hold up, but I was impressed with its cutting ability. I did notice many cracks and crevices where food can get stuck, so it is important that you wash your spiral slicer in hot, soapy water and make sure you get all food that may have dried rinsed off. In fact, go ahead and give it that hot, soapy bath before using the product for the first time. Kitchen surfaces are one of the many ways food-borne illnesses can occur.
I was especially eager to review this gadget because I had never spiral sliced anything before. Well, let me tell you: I made up for lost time! The manufacturers’ packaging listed so many foods, that I figured you could probably spiral almost anything. So what did I do? I just started pulling things out of my refrigerator and trying them out. I felt like I was a part of Myth Busters: Food Edition. “But can it spiral this? Or this?” One by one, I tested. The results were what you would expect. You can spiral slice produce items that are more fibrous. While foods like tomatoes and bananas don’t do so well (oh, yes, I did, and it was a gooey mess), while potatoes and zucchini were superstars. I was partially successful at spiraling a strawberry, believe it or not. Only, the result was a bit small and did not produce much end-product. I imagine you could spiral some very large strawberries for a nice dessert topping and that it would look lovely.
After I had some fun with random foods, I thought about how the spiral slicer would be good in some of my current patients’ kitchens to help them meet their nutritional goals. It would be great for a family with food allergies as another way to make a wheat-free pasta. It was so much faster to spiral zucchini and sauté in a pan for three minutes than it would be to boil a separate set of noodles for an allergenic family member. And anyone trying to increase produce consumption or lower carbohydrate intake would benefit from having one of these, too. You can make a noodle out of almost anything, or slice some veggies up and add it to warm soups. The beautiful garnishes that you can make using this would allow plates to look more appealing to your special dinner guest or even your picky eater child. A simple Google search or trip to Pinterest might spark some ideas, and give the novice some direction on where to begin with these types of food projects.
Back to my kitchen: I didn’t just spiral for a few hours and call it day — no, I wanted to see my handiwork in action as part of an actual family meal! I had heard that spiraled zucchini noodles don’t get as mushy as spaghetti squash, and I thought they would go perfectly with my Italian-spiced oven-roasted Roma tomatoes. I paired it with a protein of choice, Orange Roughy, a light and flaky fish that very willingly takes on any flavor accompaniments.
The dish was fun to make and it was loaded with high flavor and nutrient-rich color. The garlic smells filled my entire house and I honestly think I could’ve eaten either the sautéed spiraled zucchini or roasted Roma tomatoes on their own. Together, they were divine. My husband said it was one of the best meals I have made in a long time. Both he and my kids were very impressed by the zucchini pasta. In fact, my 10-year old daughter, Hannah, thought it was regular grain-based pasta!
The Sur La Table Spiral Slicer has been a nice complement to the Lemond kitchen and we look forward to many more experiences. It was a food spiral success that resulted in a very tasty, healthy and easy family meal.
Zucchini Pasta with Italian Roasted Roma Tomatoes
- 5 Roma tomatoes, ripe
- 5 zucchini, large
- 6 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil, divided
- 2 to 3 garlic cloves, minced
- ½ teaspoon fresh oregano
- ¾ teaspoon fresh basil
- ½ teaspoon fresh rosemary
- Salt and pepper, to taste
- Parmesan cheese, optional
- Spiral slice all zucchini (with or without the skin). Set aside.
- Preheat oven to 400° F.
- Place Roma tomatoes in a large pot of boiling water and boil for 5 minutes, or until skins start bursting apart. Remove from boiling water and place in a boil of ice water to cool. Once cooled, peel the skins off each of the tomatoes and place on a foil-lined baking sheet. Cut tomatoes into quarters, removing the core and any extra fibrous center.
- In a small mixing bowl, combine 3 tablespoons of olive oil, spices, garlic, salt and pepper. Mix well. Using a kitchen brush, spread the oil and spice mixture over the Roma tomatoes. Roast in the oven for 30 minutes until the tomatoes are fully softened.
- While the tomatoes are in the oven, heat a large sauté pan with the remaining 3 tablespoons of olive oil. Place spiraled zucchini in the pan and sauté for 3-5 minutes until the zucchini pasta is softened, but not mushy. Lightly dust with some salt and pepper, if desired.
- Top zucchini pasta with oven-roasted tomatoes and sprinkle fresh, chunky Parmesan grated cheese and fresh ground black pepper on top.
- If desired, serve with fish, pork or chicken. Make another batch of the oil mixture and brush onto the fish or meat before grilling or cooking in the oven. Serve alongside the zucchini pasta.