I love good food.
I’m a bit of a foodie, so anything there is good food, I’m a happy camper. If that good food is actually good for me, that is pretty darn awesome and if that food also happens to be dog friendly, well that is just a huge bonus. Finding foods that work on all three levels and can be considered Cooking for Dogs can be hard!
I’m a huge pasta buff.
Thick cut fresh noodles, rich sauce, some sort of cheese. It comes in so many tasty recipes, so many excellent flavours; marinara, alfredo, cheesey… oh yeah. Pasta is by far my favourite meal.
Too bad I’m allergic to it.
Sigh. Recent allergy tests suggest that continuing to eat pasta will turn me into a big itchy mess. I’m devastated. Mourning the loss of my favourite food, I’ve tried a lot of substitutes cauliflower, spaghetti squash, and cabbage (I know? What was I thinking? Cabbage?!)
My favourite so far is zucchini.
I never would have imagined that I would love zucchini noodles, but they are surprisingly so much tastier than they sound. They are tender, tasty and they make an excellent vehicle for all sorts of saucy goodness.
They are especially good with roasted red pepper sauce.You Need:
It is so easy to make either from scratch or using canned roast peppers. It’s flavourful and fresh tasting without that heaviness that comes with pasta and best of all? It’s dog friendly which means we can share it for our Cooking for Dogs weekly recipe.
3 medium red bell peppers (or 2 cups of canned roast peppers**)
1 tbsp. chopped fresh oregano
¼ tsp. salt
¼ tsp. pepper
1 tbsp. tomato paste
1 tbsp. balsamic vinegar
1 tsp. honey
2 – 3 zucchini
½ tsp. salt
1 tsp. olive oil
Optional: minced garlic, to taste
While the sauce is cooking, thinly slice zucchini. (You want to mimic the size and shape of noodles.) I found a julienne peeler or a mandolin to be super helpful and it cuts down on prep time. Toss zucchini with ½ tsp. salt and place in a colander to drain.
If you are using fresh peppers, preheat oven to 450F. Clean & deseed peppers. Roast for 30 minutes, until skin is blackened. Place in a covered bowl to cool. (The trapped steam will make it super easy to peel the peppers.) Peel off the skin and discard. Do not rinse the peppers, as they will lose that tasty flavour.
**If you are using canned peppers, drain off liquid and omit the vinegar from the recipe.
Combine peppers, tomato paste, vinegar, honey, oregano, salt & pepper in a blender or food processor and blend until smooth. Place on the stove and simmer over medium-low heat for 10 – 15 minutes.
Bring a pot of water to a boil. Drop in julienne zucchini and cook for 1 – 2 minutes. Drain off water and add a tsp. of olive oil and minced garlic. Return to heat and cook for about 5 minutes.
Plate zucchini noodles and top with sauce. To make this a hearty meal, serve with grilled chicken breast or your favourite protein. You could even make it vegetarian by serving to with chickpeas. Don’t forget that a sprinkle of fresh parmesan cheese makes any meal better.
Plus, since it’s mostly tasty veggies, you don’t have to feel guilty for slipping Fido a taste of your supper. After all, sharing is caring, right?
Meet our Cooking for Dogs Contributor Jodi and her dogs Kolchak and Felix
Jodi is a canine nutrition and small animal naturopathy student hailing from beautiful Vancouver, BC. (That’s in Canada, eh?) She loves to experiment in the kitchen, creating tasty (and healthy) treats for her two dogs, Felix & Kolchak and the rest of her family. Jodi’s blog, Kol’s Notes follows the antics of the irrepressible Kolchak as he celebrates good food, good friends and the good life.