Italian Zoodles with Chicken and Broccoli
When my husband came home with several pounds of bulk rotisserie chicken parts, I had to think fast about how we would use up the meat in meals. Last night, I made buffalo-ranch chicken tacos <YUM!!> and tonight I tried a recipe I’d pinned on Pinterest. My recipe is originally adapted from this one, but instead of making “broccoli noodles,” I used zucchini and added feta, chicken, and a few other special touches. We LOVED this recipe. If it’s not good or great, it doesn’t deserve a place on my blog. This recipe is one we will definitely be making again and again. It’s satisfying, delicious, crave-worthy, naturally gluten-free and easy to make!
When I make zoodles (zucchini noodles), I plan on one zucchini per serving and I buy very straight zucchini for spiralizing.
I use this spiralizer: Paderno World Cuisine Tri-Blade Plastic Spiral Vegetable Slicer.
I used my Lemon Garlic Peppercorn EVOO from A Taste of Eden in this recipe and did not use “regular” olive oil. It really elevated this special meal to an 11 on a scale of 1-10!
2 medium zucchini
2 pinches of kosher salt
2 T. pine nuts
1 T. EVOO
1 medium head of broccoli, chopped into florets
salt & lemon pepper, to taste
5-6 oz. cooked chicken meat, shredded or torn
3-4 fresh garlic cloves, thinly sliced
1 T. lemon juice
1 T. ghee (clarified butter) or butter
1/4 c. crumbled feta cheese or goat cheese
Parmesan cheese, to taste
Chop off the ends of washed zucchini and spiral-cut the squash, then place the “zoodles” in a mesh colander or wire strainer. Set the colander in a bowl or rimmed plate, for collecting liquid. Sprinkle two big pinches of kosher salt onto the zucchini. Massage and toss the zoodles with your hands and leave them in “time-out” to rest while you prepare the meal. This process will pull out a lot of the liquid from the zoodles.
Warm a large skillet on Medium heat and add the pine nuts, once hot. Toast them for about 4 minutes, shaking the pan vigorously at least once per minute so they get toasted evenly, and fragrant. Remove them from the pan to cool.
To the warm pan, add the olive oil, broccoli, and some salt and pepper to taste. Cover the pan and shake vigorously every minute for 4 minutes to steam the broccoli. While you’re doing this, rinse the zucchini and squeeze it to remove as much liquid as possible. Wring it out in a tea towel or cheesecloth to really get out most of the water. This helps the zucchini achieve a pasta-like texture.
Add the zucchini noodles (zoodles), chicken, garlic, lemon juice and ghee or butter to the pan with the partially-cooked broccoli. Toss or stir to combine, then put the lid back on and shake the pan every minute for about 4 minutes.
Sprinkle the feta or goat cheese onto the zoodles dish, then drizzle with additional EVOO, add some shredded Parmesan, the toasted pine nuts and freshly ground pepper or lemon pepper, to taste. Enjoy immediately!
Here are some photos of a few of the steps.