Let’s talk about music.
I recently discovered an old CD case of mine from high school full of “random mixes”. The CD’s are littered with graffiti handwriting, stars, and miscellaneous “I Luv You”‘s. Half of them are forever entombed in that license plate-bound cd case, victims of a pink-lemonade explosion.
The other half? Well, the other half are full of memories.
It’s amazing how quickly a single song can take you back in time, take you back to a moment. You can remember who you were with, what you were doing, what emotions you were feeling. You remember long-lost friends, long-forgotten memories. Music is a whimsical art that can stir up your past right before your eyes quicker than any smell can.
Most of the CD’s in that case were from my high school years. I went to high school during the height of the “emo” fad. From First to Last, Underoath, Hawthorne Heights, Atreyu, The Spill Canvas, and Taking Back Sunday are the artists featured on some of the CD’s. It’s incredible that I can still remember the lyrics & who sung what on these cd’s—remember, this is a good 7-8 years ago.
One CD had a lot of CKY, HIM, NIN, and The Bled on it. I remember that group of friends that I had in high school, sort of a “skater” scene, that loved those bands. I, of course, loved those bands too.
Then there’s another with Metallica, Red Hot Chili Peppers, Rage Against the Machine, Zeppelin & Dream Theater. I can remember specifically who I was dating when I made that cd, because he basically introduced me to those bands.
I’ve always been profoundly impacted by music, and the time capsule that I found is no different. My mood quickly changes when I pop one of those mixes into my CD player and I hear a song that takes me back in time. I can’t believe they can even still play after all of these years.
Now, let’s talk about food.
A friend of mine at work showed me his Pinterest the other day. On it, tons of pictures of vegetable “noodles” flooded his boards. “How do you make these?” I asked.
And then he proceeded to tell me about the greatest invention ever.
Introducing to you, the Spiralizer. Only $34 on amazon.com!
That night when I got home, I immediately took to the internet and bought myself one. Three days later it appeared on my doorstep.
This thing is absolutely BRILLIANT. I had the chance to try it out tonight, so I gathered a few ingredients I had on hand to make a mock lo mein.
I’ve been craving pasta ever since I gave it up a few weeks ago, and so the thought of making a veggie pasta soothed my pasta-hungry soul. I’ve been trying to stick to a strict paleo diet; by that I mean no making carbs out of stuff weird stuff. I’ve seen a lot of recipes on Pinterest of people making “paleo” cakes & bread & cinnamon rolls—I think that is counterproductive. The whole point of going paleo is to live off of a basic diet of vegetables, fruits, meats & nuts. NO processed stuff—so making bread out of almond meal and other strange ingredients is the same, in my mind, as eating PROCESSED food.
This Spiralizer, though, is the way to go. Want noodles? Spiral up some zucchini. It’s dense like pasta, and sauces just seem to gravitate to it.
Anyway, back to the mock-lo mein. I had shrimp, zucchini, onions and a boat-load of Asian sauces and spices in my fridge & pantry. Lo Mein is my favorite thing to order when I get take-out, so I tried to recreate it. The end result was fabulous, but what do I know? Try it yourself to find out.
And PS, I’m never going back to real noodles again. Zucchini noodles, zoodles, whatever you want to call them—are where it’s at. I highly recommend!
Shrimp Faux Mein
-3 large zucchini, spiraled with a Spiralizer (no Spiralizer? Try a mandolin to cut thin strips out of the zucchini)
-1 lb. raw, unpeeled shrimp
-1/2 large yellow onion, chopped
-2 cloves garlic, minced
-2 TBS. Teriyaki sauce
-1 TBS. Soy sauce
-2 tsp. red pepper flakes
-2 tsp. sweet chili sauce
-1/2 tsp. ground ginger
-1 TBS. Thai peanut sauce
-1 tsp. lime juice
-salt & pepper
1. In large bowl, toss zucchini, onions & garlic until well mixed. In small bowl, combine teriyaki sauce, soy sauce, red pepper flakes, thai chili sauce, peanut sauce, ginger, salt & pepper. Pour over zucchini mix and toss to coat.
2. Heat large skillet or wok over medium-high heat. Add zucchini mixture and cook/stir-fry for 7-9 minutes, or until onions are translucent and zucchini is crisp-tender. Meanwhile, clean, peel and de-vein shrimp. Add to skillet and cook for another 3-4 minutes, or until shrimp is pink.
3. Turn heat off, transfer faux mein to platter and top with chopped peanuts if desired.
You can be versatile with the sauces and seasonings. I like teriyaki sauce, so I add a lot to mine. I chopped up some peanuts to sprinkle on top, and was pleasantly surprised. The zoodles were so good; kind of like an al dente pasta linguine. They really soaked up the sauce and enhanced the flavor of the faux mein. Enjoy!