This super easy low-carb dish is a great way to savor the delicious, natural flavors of fresh cucumber, basil, garlic, and toasted pine nuts. Enjoy this dish on its own, or top with your favorite lean protein, such as grilled chicken or steamed fish, for a more satisfying meal.
Tip: For best results, use seedless cucumbers that are at least 1½” thick.
For a shortcut, purchase the noodles already spiralized in your supermarket and/or pick up premade fresh basil pesto.
Prep time: 15 minutes
Cook time: n/a
4 large firm seedless cucumbers, peeled
½ c. fresh pesto (recipe below)
Sea salt and black pepper, to taste
Vegetable spiral slicer
1. Prepare fresh basil pesto. Set aside.
2. Using a spiral slicer, cut cucumbers into thick, long noodles.
3. Place cut noodles on paper or clean kitchen towels and gently blot to absorb excess moisture.
4. Place cucumber noodles in a medium, non-reactive bowl and top with fresh pesto.
5. Toss gently to combine. Season with salt and black pepper, to taste, and serve immediately. Enjoy!
Fresh Basil Pesto
This versatile favorite is delicious on top of your favorite pasta, gnocchi, or soup. Or simply enjoy it spread across a crusty slice of bread.
Most modern recipes, including this one, call for making pesto with a food processor to combine the ingredients. This method works well but produces a very homogenized final result. For a more traditional approach, try hand-chopping the individual ingredients. The individual components that make up this recipe will be less uniform, resulting in more distinct individual flavors among bites.
2 cups fresh basil, loosely packed
¼ cup toasted pine nuts
2 – 4 garlic cloves, peeled (amount based on personal taste and strength of garlic variety used).
2/3 cup Parmesan cheese, freshly grated
1/3 cup plus 2 tablespoons really good extra virgin olive oil
Salt and pepper, to taste
1. Remove basil leaves from stems, then wash and pat dry. Add basil, pine nuts, peeled garlic gloves and Parmesan cheese to food processor or blender. Quickly pulse until barely combined, then add 1/3 cup extra virgin olive oil and blend thoroughly.
2. Add remaining olive oil and/or additional grated Parmesan cheese to achieve the desired consistency. Season with salt and pepper, to taste.