Squash Noodles with Cilantro Pesto

Zoodles with Cilantro PestoMany of you know how much I love my Paderno Spiral Slicer. Since purchasing it, I haven’t missed noodles because I have them all. the. time. It is immensely satisfying to slurp up some delicious noodles with a variety of sauces. In this case, I was looking for a side dish to accompany some sausages and pesto is remarkably easy. There are so many different ways you can make pesto too – it’s not just for basil and pine nuts. In this case, I made a cilantro pesto because I love the fresh citrusy burst against the squash noodles. It makes my taste buds dance.

My husband loved this and my 8 year old gave it not quite a thumbs down. In my house, that translates to insanely good because if it’s green, it already has a hit against it, and if it’s zucchini, it’s a double hit. So I’d say this is a winner! I happen to find the combination of yellow and green noodles particularly attractive, but it’s totally unnecessary. You can use either color, but if you have company coming over, definitely use both. It’s beautiful.

Squash Noodles with Cilantro Pesto

2 zucchini

2 yellow squash

2 tsp. salt

2 Tbsp. pine nuts, toasted, divided

1 bunch cilantro

1/4 tsp. lemon zest (from 1/2 a lemon)

2 Tbsp. lemon juice

2 cloves garlic

3 Tbps. extra virgin olive oil

1/4 tsp. salt

pepper to taste

Directions

1) Julienne or spiral-slice your squash. Place in a colander, sprinkle with 2 tsp. salt, and let sweat for about 20 minutes.

2) While your squash is sweating, prepare the sauce. Cut off most of the cilantro ends and place the cilantro in a food processor. Add lemon juice and zest, garlic, 1/4 tsp. salt, and 1 Tbsp. toasted pine nuts. Begin processing and add olive oil through the tube. Process until smooth and taste to adjust seasonings, adding more olive oil or lemon as needed. Set aside.

3) Preheat a large skillet over medium-high heat. Rinse squash well and shake. Add to hot pan with the water that clings to it and sauté for 3 minutes or until it is just tender to your liking.

4) Stir in about 1/4 c. pesto, or more if you like. (I saved the rest to add to my eggs the next day!)  Sprinkle with pine nuts, pepper to taste, and serve.

Serves 2 (but you can easily double the squash and use all the pesto)

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