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Vegan Rocket Pesto and Cucourghetti

You'll never guess what... it's a new recipe! And not only that, it's a VEGAN recipe! Don't worry, I haven't changed that much. Just decided that maybe might try a vegetarian meal once a week for a while, just to prove that you can make delicious vegetarian meals without using frankenfood faux meat products. You can, you know.

Also, the only reason this is actually vegan instead of vegetarian is because I forgot to buy parmesan cheese. Honest. And, full disclosure, there's a cucumber in there instead of three courgettes because I needed to use the cucumber in the fridge.

Now I have a spare courgette in the fridge though.

Which is ridiculous, really, as I was out at the market today - not once, but twice. See, I also made kale chips today because a local farm has a stall in the market and they grow kale. This might not seem like something exciting to you - but I spent years looking for kale here in Spain. For some reason, it got all trendy a few years ago but it was only relatively recently that it's started to appear in the markets (as far as I know).

But I digress. You are here for the pesto, right?

This makes more pesto than you'll need for one meal but you can save the rest in the fridge for another meal later in the week - or even freeze it and find it in a month's time!

Servings 2
    Vegan Pesto
  • 50 grams pinenuts
  • 3 cloves garlic
  • 100 grams rocket
  • 20 grams fresh basil
  • 2 tablespoons lemon juice
  • 3 tablespoons nutritional yeast flakes
  • 4 tablespoons olive oil
  • .5 teaspoons sea salt
  • 1 pinch black pepper
  • Noodles to serve
  • 2 courgettes (zucchini (regular size))
  • 1 cucumber (also regular size, sorry - forgot to weigh these!)
  • 5 sundried tomatoes
  • 1 teaspoon sea salt
    Prepare the noodles!
  1. Using your well-loved kitchen gadget, the spiralizer, spiralize the cucumber and the two courgettes and put in a colander perched about a bowl (or the sink). Stay with me....

  2. Sprinkle the sea salt onto the noodles, cover with a paper towel and place a heavy weight on top. I used a large can of sauerkraut. Set this aside while you make the vegan pesto.

  3. Vegan Pesto
  4. Toast the pine nuts in a small, dry skillet or whatever you use to toast nuts. Not the toaster - too messy. Careful not to let them burn - it doesn't take long to toast!

    You can skip this step but I think the toastedness adds to the flavour.
  5. While the pinenuts are cooling, stuff your food processor with the rocket, basil and (now) crushed garlic. Pour in the pinenuts when they aren't burning hot. 

  6. Whizz the food processor round to chop up the leaves and pinenuts and then pour in the lemon juice, olive oil and nutritional yeast. Whizz some more. That's it.

    You might want to add more olive oil to make a more sauce-y pesto depending on what you plan on using it for.
  7. Back to the noodles
  8. Heat up a wok or large frying pan and a drop of oil. 

  9. Give your noodles one last press to get out as much water as possible before cooking. It really is amazing how much liquid comes out of them!

  10. Throw the noodles into the hot pan, careful that the oil doesn't splatter. Cook for about 3 or 4 minutes.

  11. Throw in about 3 or 4 tablespoons of pesto in with the noodles and cook for a further 4 or 5 minutes. 

  12. While they are cooking, chop up the sundried tomatoes into small bacon-bit sized pieces. Toss these into the noodles and stir about. That's pretty much it.

    You could add bacon, cooked chicken, meatballs, peppers... well, you get the gist. In fact, you could just have the noodles with the pesto. I put in the sundried tomatoes because I found them in the fridge when I cleaned it this weekend.