Did you know that zucchinis are fruits? Well botanically speaking that is! Just thought I’d start off this recipe with a little fun fact for you. 🙂
I’ve always loved cooked zucchini. In my mom’s ratatouille (french Mediterranean-style vegetable stew) or grilled on the barbecue. But I had never thought of having it raw until a few years ago when my roommate in Montreal bought a spiralizer and made raw zucchini noodles.
Since then, I quickly bought my own and have made all kinds of spiralized vegetable salads and dishes.
My favorite has to be the classic, pesto zucchini noodles. I used to use only store bought pesto sauce out of convenience until one summer in France, my aunt made pesto in her food processor in less than 5 minutes!
I didn’t even know how simple it was to make, but most importantly how much better it tasted! But don’t get me wrong, any pesto is delicious and I still keep a jar around for the times when I run out and I am too lazy to make it from scratch (we all get those days no?)
Alright without any further ado, here’s the recipe:
Prep time: 15 minutes
Makes 1½ cups fresh pesto
- 1 ½ cups organic fresh basil leaves, packed (50 g)
- 1 cup organic baby spinach, packed
- ½ cup freshly grated Parmesan
- ⅓ cup pine nuts
- 2-3 garlic cloves, minced
- ½ cup organic extra virgin olive oil
- Salt and pepper to taste
Equipment: Food processor
- Add the washed and dried basil and spinach to the food processor with the pine nuts, parmesan and garlic.
- Pulse and scrape down side until finely chopped.
- With the food processor running, add the olive oil in a thin stream. This will help emulsify (blend) the pesto.
- Add salt and pepper and pulse to incorporate.
- Use for your zucchini noodles or any type of pasta or transfer to container to store in the fridge.
Note: For a vegan alternative, omit the parmesan or use ground almond and nutritional yeast instead!
Prep time: 5 minutes
Serves 4 people
4 medium sized zucchini (2-3 large zucchinis)
Equipment: Spiralizer or julienne peeler
- Wash and dry zucchini.
- Cut off ends and spiralize!
You can have the zucchini noodles raw with your homemade pesto sauce and some sliced cherry tomatoes for a wonderful salad. Or you can sauté the zucchini noodles with the pesto sauce for a warm noodle dinner!
These are just the perfect answer to those carb cravings we all get when winter is coming. But this is packed with nutrients and a lot less carbohydrates but most importantly: no processed ingredients or wheat gluten.
Zucchinis are low in saturated fat and sodium, and very low in cholesterol. They are a good source of Vitamin A, Thiamin, Niacin, Phosphorus and Copper. Did you know that they are actually a good source of protein too? Awesome right!? And they are a very good source of Dietary Fiber, Vitamin C, Vitamin K, Riboflavin, Vitamin B6, Folate, Magnesium, Potassium and Manganese.
Interestingly, they are also a source of omega 3 fatty acids! One medium sized zucchini has 92.1 mg of Omega-3 fatty acids and 54.9 mg of omega 6 fatty acids!
That’s a bone healthy fruit right there!
I hope you enjoy this super simple recipe and get very creative with all different sorts of noodle/sauce variations! Are you a tomato sauce person or a cheesy alfredo? Let me know in the comments below!
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