Zucchini Noodles w/ Basil and Hemp Nut Pesto & The Benefits of a completely raw meal

by Julie on October 6, 2010

This summer I was able to create and photograph many recipes for you.  It is now October and I still haven’t shown you this wonderful raw zucchini noodle dish that I ate all summer long and will enjoy as long as I can find zucchinis and some basil.  I can usually find these ingredients most of the year-how about you, can you locate these goodies in your local market?

I hope so cuz this dish is a little addictive if I do say so myself.  It is soooo easy to prepare and there is no cooking required- don’t you love that?  If you make a large batch of the noodles, they keep well so you could have dinner on the table in a matter of 2 minutes or as long as it takes you to toss pesto on the noodles and make a quick salad if you wish a 2nd dish.  I rather like a simple tomato salad with this as it pairs nicely with the pesto.  You may be thinking that this is too summery to make now that autumn is approaching and comfort food is calling your name but perhaps have it along side a lightly warmed tomato soup or a lovely avocado slathered piece of sprouted grain toast.  The main thing is to have some raw food at every meal and this is a nice change from a salad or in addition to.

What you do need to make this though, is a spiral slicer.  It’s an inexpensive but invaluable hand slicer that even my 5 year old daughter can use.  It is possible how ever to make a fettucini noodle with a potato peeler instead but it will be a slightly different effect.  If you have a julienne peeler that could work too, but the spiral slicer is ideal and offers blades for three noodles sizes.  For this recipe and for the “prettiness” of it I peeled the zucchini but it isn’t really necessary to peel and it is very beneficial to consume the skin as it is rich in chlorophyll and beta carotene.

As with many vegetables, zucchini is loaded with dietary fiber and proteins as well as antioxidants, especially vitamin C for inflammatory properties, memory improvement and curing asthma.  If you have poor eye sight the Vitamin C and the high content of carotenoids (lutein) can help you here.  Zucchini is packed with the following nutrients essential for building and maintaining a healthy body; folate, potassium, vitamin A, vitamin K, vitamin B6, riboflavin, manganese (one of the best sources), magnesium, copper, folate, zinc, calcium, phosphorous, niacin, tryptophan and many others.  Consuming this useful high water content vegetable is beneficial for dramatically reducing symptoms of disease and reducing the rate of colon cancer & heart disease by as much as 55%.  It also reduces your risk of multiple sclerosis and inflammation (key cause of disease), while maintaining healthy bones, capillaries and improving your metabolism.   How’s that for an action packed vegetable?  It should really be a regular part of your weekly meals for optimal health if you can find it in your locale.  I haven’t even mentioned how healthy the pesto is.  The hemp nuts  and the other nuts add an excellent vegan protein along with good omegas while the basil is rich in flavonoids, which help to protect cells and chromosomes from damage especially by radiation and oxygen.  All in all, this is one healthy dish!

Raw Zucchini Noodles w/ Pesto
Yield: serves 4
2- 6 to 8 inch zucchinis, peeled if desired
pinch celtic sea salt
1 cup of basil leaves
3 tbsp raw hemp hearts
1/4 c pine nuts and or raw walnuts, or raw cashews
1/4c olive oil and bit for consistency
1 clove garlic crushed
pinch sea salt
If using spiral slicer, trim both ends of zuchini straight so as to line up evenly and flush between the holder and the blade.  Begin winding and the spaghetti like noodles will form thru the openings on the blade.  Remove core and use for another dish.  For a fettucini like noodle you may use a potato peeler to peel the zucchini into wide strips.  Set noodles aside.
For the Pesto
Combine basil, olive oil, nuts, garlic and sea salt in blender or food processor and combine until and even consistency is achieved, scraping down the sides.  Add a wee bit extra oil if needed for consistency.
Toss the noodles with the pesto, season with sea salt and serve immediately.  Failure to do so may result in softer noodles and a watery residue as the zucchini loses it’s moisture-but it still tastes yummy!

This handy dandy spiral slicer cost about 50.00.  I think it has more than paid for itself with all the use it has received since I brought it home.  The kids love using it too!  They’ve used it themselves for thinly sliced apples tossed in cinnamon, thinly spiraled carrots that are yummy, firm pears, the list goes on.  It makes eating fruits and veggies way more fun when the kids can be a part of the prep and when the produce is more interesting to eat!

The benefits of a completely raw meal are astounding. You may not be a raw foodie nor even be contemplating it but now and again a completely raw meal does the body good.  If you find that you are a little bogged down with your daily “movements” a simple raw meal can make all the difference, and better yet an entire raw day if you can manage that.  Living foods are passed thru our systems with such ease and can assist in flushing resting toxins from your system.  The nutritional benefit of the live foods are fully present and are easily digested when raw.  It’s commendable to be vegetarian but all too often fancy vegetarian meals are made to replace the missing meat components and most vegetables are still fully cooked, thus losing the much needed nutrients.  Ever been to a vegetarian food bar?  Most everything is cooked except the token small salad bar along with tofu this and tofu that.  You are much better off eating a bigger part of your meal or your entire meal raw and gaining maximum benefits from your produce dollars.  I’m not suggesting you go 100% raw but by following an alkaline lifestyle and incorporating 70-80% raw in your diet you can enjoy some cooked foods with a large percentage of raw and will be sure to maintain an excellent balance of living foods which are thee force of life and energy.  Studies have shown that a diet rich in raw foods can reverse signs of aging and correct many symptoms of disease and cancer depending on the degree of progression.

My thought is this. If we now know that this is a proven fact then why wait until you show symptoms of disease or you have cancer to begin a healthy regime.  Our bodies can do miraculous things but asking it to reverse cancer versus avoid cancer is an even more daunting task for it to over come.  Though it has been done many times, it takes a serious commitment by the patient and the guidance of an alkaline consultant with extensive experience over seeing a special juicing feast, armed with targeted supplements & protocols to be successful. I believe this to be the better option over chemo and radiation for fighting cancer.  I can count on every finger someone I know or am related to that currently has cancer or recently died of cancer.  Those that I know that suffer from a myriad of diseases are counted on all my toes and the toes of my children!  If you can recognize that our food and high levels of stress are the factors of disease then please consider what you eat.  It’s not rocket science to see that the hormone & antibiotic laiden meats & dairy, cooked and of course processed food of today is killing us.  We have the knowledge and the power to change our paths yet many of us just keep on eating the same old.  I’m here to share my knowledge and recipes to inspire you in considering a different way of eating and living that will reward you in ways you never knew possible.

Let me know if you try this noodle dish or if you have a favourite way of preparing these delicious noodles. If you are celebrating thanksgiving this weekend I wish you a special time with friends and family and hope that you enjoy a healthy and energizing meal together.

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