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My daughter bought me a spiralizer recently.

After a quick and simple assembly, I decided to try it out on zucchini. I wanted to make those famous “zoodles” everyone is talking about.

The spiralizer came with three different blades. I opted for the spaghetti cut. The first problem I encountered was that the suction cup designed to hold the spiralizer in place would not adhere to my granite counter top. I had to hold it in place while trying to turn the handle. A little annoying, but I was able to make it work.

The actual cutting (or turning) process is very fast. It makes a zucchini into noodles in less than a minute. The fun part was discovering that if you are careful, you can make one incredibly long zoodle.

Here is a comparison of how much zoodle you get from one vs. two small zucchini (the only size carried in grocery stores in my area).

I had researched what was the best way to cook the zoodles. I decided to try the most recommended method, which was to dry them in the oven.

As you can see, the drying process resulted in varying sizes, as well as differences in “doneness.” I served the zoodles with hot marinara. The texture was that of regular spaghetti which had been cooked FAR TOO LONG. Totally mushy!!!

I changed the blade to the fettucine cut, which yields a thicker zoodle. You still get varying sizes, but the overall zoodles looked better.

This time, I poured the marinara directly on the raw zoodles. The result was far superior. I usually say that I don’t like zucchini- raw or cooked, but this was actually really yummy.

Now came the question- what to do with the scraps. After cutting the zoodles, you are left with a core and a small round from the base of the zucchini.

I cut these scraps up and served them with the hot marinara.

The result was not nearly as enjoyable as the fettucine cut. The texture was too dense, and the zucchini taste overpowered the sauce. Conclusion-save the scraps for the soup pot.

I have a disclaimer- raw zucchini does NOT freeze well. It comes out looking slimy, and definitely does not retain any texture. Yuck!


This is my son. We started cooking together when he was about 5 years old. He was a rather picky eater back then, so I had to get creative to get him to eat healthy. He graduated from the UNLV College of Hospitality and now works in the food industry. His palette has grown up, of course. He challenges me to become a better and more creative cook. He especially picked up on my willingness to make small changes to get big results and big flavor.

Last week, I made a slow-roasted pork roast. I made my own Cajun spice mix. I mixed some of that with a little brown sugar and rubbed it all over the roast. I put the roast in a large pan, resting on a bed of sliced onions and crushed garlic. I covered it with foil and put it in a slow oven for 6 hours. I resisted the temptation to check on the roast, because I wanted all of the juices to stay in. On the side, I made mashed potatoes with gravy. The pan juices had some of the Cajun spices and brown sugar melted in. The result was an amazing gravy!

I also made focaccia, using my basic pizza dough recipe. I replaced the extra virgin olive oil with 2 flavored oil oils which my sister sent me from Florida. One oil was wild mushroom & sage, and the other was basil & garlic. The addition of these oils to the dough lifted the flavor, but not in an in-your-face way. The dough recipe made one large focaccia and a dozen slider rolls. I brushed them with olive oil and sprinkled them with my own Italian herb seasoning mix.

The next day, I made a barbecue sauce using some of the Red Apple dark balsamic vinegar my sister also sent. The dark balsamic vinegar was less tart than my regular red wine vinegar, resulting in a fruitier sauce, that also needed less sweetener. I shredded the left over pork, and we had BBQ pork sliders.

I also made some sautéed cabbage. I cooked the cabbage in a little bit of olive oil and some sodium-free chicken stock. (This allows ME to control the salt and the fat content.)

At the end, I added a little butter, some salt & pepper, and a drizzle of the Key Lime white balsamic vinegar. That little change lifted the lowly cabbage to a whole new level. My husband, who generally does not like cabbage, had two servings.

The moral of the story? The changes I made were very small, and pretty healthy. Although these oils and vinegars are a little pricey, the truth is that it took such a small amount of each one that the overall cost was minimal.

2 stores in Florida. Also available online.


My family has started Zoom meetings, since we are spread across the country and due to the difficulty of traveling safely during the Covid19 shutdown.

We started talking about childhood memories. One of the most mentioned was traveling to Iowa to visit relatives when we were kids. One of the highlights of the trip was a trip to our great-uncle John’s bakery. Everybody’s favorite was the chocolate yeast-raised donuts with chocolate glaze.

Here is the result. In the center are the glazed donuts. Front left are the donut holes with powdered sugar. Front right is filled with raspberry jam and topped with whipped cream. Back right are filled with whipped cream topped with the chocolate glaze.

The flavor and texture was checked by my best helper.

Last week, we made cake donuts, which were pretty good too.

I think Uncle John is smiling right now.



I am Kate Pia. I love to cook. Even more, I love to have family and friends share my food. They suggested I share that love with more people, and start a blog. I am new to this blogging thing, and do not profess to be an expert. I just want to share some cooking ideas, and some of my favorite food adventures.

As you can see, I have a very cute assistant who loves to “mix, mix, mix” with me. On this day, we made one of our favorites- French Apple Cake.

I will be sharing ideas to make simple changes to your recipes and menus, and still get delicious food.

Cast Iron Skillet Pizza

Frozen Chocolate Mousse Dessert

Some Paris flair in Las Vegas

Searching for new spices at San Francisco’s Pier Fisherman’s Wharf