A sunny day in late November is a real treat. It sends strong reminders of the summer that’s gone, and that, as well as too much root vegetables on the plate over the Thanksgiving holiday, made me reach out for summer squash.
Summer squash is not something I routinely make. I prefer zucchini and Italian squash, but this time around it was the summer squash that looked the freshest so that’s what I got. I used my spiralizer to make some summer squash noodles – if you don’t know what spiralizer is, it’s a kitchen gadget that you’d think you can totally live without but in reality you really can’t.
Joking aside, spiralizer is a gadget that makes long, amazing noodles from all sorts of vegetables and fruit. Initially, I thought I can get by with a mandoline slicer – and that worked fine couple of times. But, after buying spiral cut zucchini from the store few times – and paying through the roof for it – I finally broke down and bought an actual spiralizer. The gadget paid off for itself already, and I’ve enjoyed spiralizing zucchini, summer squash, sweet potatoes, apples and beets.
I paired summer squash with a simple oil-free pumpkin seed pesto, which has four ingredients only: raw pumpkin seeds, roasted garlic, fresh parsley and nutritional yeast. The pesto comes together in a food processor in less than two minutes and it’s ready to use immediately. Plus, the pesto uses pumpkin seeds so in a way builds on all the pumpkin craziness of the season, which I kicked off with my Pumpkin Truffles.
You can make this dish completely oil free, but I did use some cooking spray to oil the baking dish. It helps brown the pesto and the squash, and it does help with cleaning up. This baked summer squash “pasta” goes well with a side of chopped roasted red peppers, some shredded vegan cheese, ripe avocado slices, or a squeeze of lemon. It’s easily customizable, but it’s also a meal on its own.
Note: this same recipe would work with spiralized zucchini or spiralized Italian squash!!!
Baked Summer Squash Noodles with Pumpkin Seed Pesto
What you’ll need:
5 pieces of summer squash, spiralized
2 cups pumpkin seeds, raw
1/2 cup flat leaf parsley
3 cloves garlic, roasted
2 tablespoon nutritional yeast
What you’ll do:
- Preheat the oven to 350 F (175 C).
- Spray the bottom and sides of a large and deep baking dish with cooking spray.
- Place your spiralized summer squash in a large mixing bowl.
- In a food processor combine pumpkin seeds, roasted garlic, fresh parsley and nutritional yeast. Pulse until a fine pesto forms.
- Pour the pumpkin seed pesto over the summer squash noodles and toss to combine.
- Pour everything into the baking dish and bake uncovered for 15-20 minutes.
- Cover the baking dish with foil and bake covered for another 15 minutes or so. Serve hot, or cold as a salad with a drizzle of balsamic vinegar!!!
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