Pesto, Shrimp & Zoodles

This dish makes a perfectly light, delicious and nutrient-dense summer meal! Zoodles are nothing more than zucchini transformed into noodles either using a spiralizer, (I use Paderno brand), or a vegetable peeler. Combining the zoodles with shrimp and pesto knocks this meal out of the nourishment park. This recipe has been adapted from Practical Paleo by Diane SanFilippo.

Ingredients (Serving for 2)

4 zucchini or yellow squash

2 dozen large shrimp – fresh or frozen

Sea salt and crushed black pepper to taste

Optional:

Grape tomatoes

Crushed red pepper flakes to taste

Pesto

½ cup of macadamia nuts

1 bunch cilantro, rinsed

1 small/medium clove of garlic

½ cup of extra virgin olive oil

Sea salt and crushed black pepper to taste

Preparation

Zoodles

If using a spiralizer, cut off the ends of zucchini or yellow squash, set each vegetable in place one at a time and turn the knob. Repeat until all 4 zucchini have been converted to zoodles. If using a vegetable peeler, run it along each of the squash until you reach the center, seedy part. Place all your zoodles into a colander. Sprinkle generously with sea salt. Put aside for 45 min. (This technique helps to draw out the liquid from the zoodles thereby allowing them to become ‘al dente’ with cooking.) Thoroughly rinse away all salt when zoodles are ready to cook.

Pesto

Combine the macadamia nuts, cilantro, garlic, evoo, sea salt and black pepper in a food processor. Blend until smooth. Taste and add additional salt/pepper if necessary.

Shrimp

Nowadays, it’s easy to find fresh/frozen shrimp that’s already deveined and pealed. If not, peel and devein the shrimp before cooking. Pull the tail off first, then the rest of the shell.

Cooking

Boil salted water enough to drop in the zoodles. Allow zoodles to cook for 2 minutes. Please note, water does not need to be boiling once the zoodles are added to the pot.

Simultaneously, add the shrimp in a steamer basket in a separate pot containing an inch high of boiling water. Allow to steam for approximately 3 minutes if fresh or for 3-5 minutes if frozen. In either case, shrimp should be pink through and through.

Plating

Drain the zoodles thoroughly and add to a mixing bowl along with the pesto. Toss well.

Top the zoodles with the steamed shrimp. Serve warm and enjoy with a lovely glass of organic rose’ or white wine.

Buon appetito!