Zucchini Pasta with Marinara and Crispy Meatballs

Have you ever tried growing your own food? It is surprisingly difficult here in central Oregon! When I lived in Hawaii, I just threw seeds on the ground and things grew. Light, no light, no rain, whatever. Flourishing garden.

Obviously, this is not the case here. In C.O., you have to watch the land in the space during all the seasons, see the sunny spots, the spots that collect water, the rocky patches, and the areas that need nutrients because our dirt is not exactly ‘fertile’. You have to learn when it freezes, account for 30+ degree temperature swings, and know that hail, drought, and fire are all common visitors to the region.I tried growing a small garden this year and it was a big ol’ gosh darn fail, y’all, let me tell you. It is so nuanced.

The spring is so cold that you have to start plants indoors and since I don’t have any direct sunlight anywhere in the house, they were all stunted and sad. I missed a couple days of watering over the summer, and well, let’s just say that it is mid September and I have almost successfully grown 4 cherry tomatoes… almost. Haha. This makes me appreciate those who take the time to learn and watch, toil the land and tend the little babies until they are nutritious, fully grown, gorgeous produce. I love when I can make recipes completely from Rainshadow.

I feel so food sovereign and happy. This is one of those recipes that highlights the talent of these farmers in the culmination of summer bounty.

Zucchini Pasta with Marinara and Crispy Meatballs-serves


  • 1 package rainshadow ground beef
  • 1 tbsp garlic powder
  • 1 tsp paprika
  • 1 egg
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • Panko breadcrumbs
  • Marinara:
  • 3 lbs heirloom
  • diced tomatoes
  • 1 large diced onion
  • About 40 lbs minced garlic,
  • or however much you like 😉
  • 1 tbsp thyme*
  • 1 tbsp oregano*
  • 1 tbsp basil**use fresh herbs when possible for that *chef’s kiss*


  • 1 tbsp table sugar or maple syrup
  • 2 tbsp red wine vinegar.
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • 3 large zucchini spiralized


  1. Add all marinara ingredients to a large skillet and let simmer, reduce and become amazing.
  2. Add all meatball ingredients and roll in panko. Place on a nonstick baking sheet and bake at 375F until golden brown (about 20 min)
  3. Heat the spiralized zucchini in a nonstick skillet and plate, top with marinara, meatballs and fresh herbs.