I scoffed. I made fun. I dug in my heels. And then two weeks ago I caved and bought a spiralizer. I know I’m late to the game. The Internet has been making zucchini noodles for ages now. But honestly, it’s taken me this long to get on board with the whole concept.
For one, I’m not a huge pasta person (there, I said it). If I’m going to eat copious amounts of carbs, I’d much rather have a bagel and cream cheese, or good bread and butter, or a baguette and a wedge of brie. Or cake. Since spaghetti isn’t really a big part of my diet, I wasn’t too concerned with lightening it.
For another, I already have so. many. kitchen gadgets. An ice cream maker. A mini food processor. Not one, but two juicers. A stand mixer. A spice grinder. I could go on, but I’ll stop there and spare you the full list. I wasn’t sure I could fit one more appliance into my cabinets. (Side note: I recently bought The Life Changing Magic of Tidying Up with the sole purpose of reorganizing and streamlining my kitchen, but I have yet to actually read it. Baby steps.)
But you guys, now it’s August. And we’re all swimming in zucchini, aren’t we? And wouldn’t it be great to have a quick, healthy, and delicious way to use it all up? These were the big questions I asked myself as I stood in Bed Bath & Beyond, spiralizer box in hand.
I’m so glad I took the plunge. I’ve already made these zucchini noodles with jalapeño pesto three times. It’s perfect as a light summery entrée, but you can also serve it as a side with grilled chicken, or top it with shrimp. I shot these photos with raw zucchini noodles, but you can also sauté them in a teaspoon of olive oil for about 90 seconds, just to warm them through, before tossing them with the pesto. I used a whole jalapeño, but if you’re concerned about the heat, scrape out the seeds.
Zucchini Noodles with Jalapeño Pesto
- 1/2 cup walnuts
- 1 clove garlic chopped
- 1 jalapeño 2-inch, remove the seeds for a milder version, stemmed and chopped
- 1 cup grated Asiago cheese plus more for serving
- 1 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
- 2 heaping cups baby spinach
- 2 heaping cups arugula
- 1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil
- 2 large zucchini
- Chopped fresh parsley or basil for serving
In a food processor, combine the walnuts, garlic, jalapeño, 1 cup of cheese, salt, and pepper. Process until finely ground. Add the spinach and arugula and process until finely ground. With the motor running, slowly drizzle in the olive oil and process until smooth.
Shred the zucchini on a spiralizer. Toss with some of the pesto and sprinkle with cheese and parsley or basil.
If you don't have a spiralizer, you can still make this dish! Cut the zucchini into long ribbons with a Y-peeler.