Vibrant Table's Zucchini Spaghetti with Peaches and Pumpkin Seed Pesto

On Tuesdays I work at coffee shops with a couple girlfriends who also call their homes their workplaces. It’s a good chance to knock social activity and work hours out together (she says, like a true introvert) and one that gives all of us an excuse to spend $5 at a local business as well as put on normal clothes before noon (okay, that last part might just be me). This past week, we also met up on Thursday, and when we did it was at the new coffee shop in my neighborhood, which is also the first coffee shop in my neighborhood, a news-worthy event for South Nashville if ever there were one. Since it opened 1.5 weeks ago, I have already discussed this hip new place and its white string lights and ample seating area with our neighbors down the street at lunch on Memorial Day, my friend Jenna at book club (who, notably, found out about it in the community newsletter I’ve apparently known nothing about) and, also, at a workshop that my friend and former neighbor Ashley led in Hermitage, when the sweet nine-months-pregnant girl sitting next to me said she lived in Woodbine and the coffee shop was the first thing we had to discuss.

I’ve met the owner three times now (although I’m sure he has no idea who I am), including in a long conversation my never-met-a-stranger coffee-shop work buddies and I shared with him and another guy, about Internet and Google Fiber and the fact that this stranger who was eating a scone next to me turns out to live walking distance from my house. As a girl who grew up in the spread-out Chicago suburbs, I’ve never quite experienced the feel of a neighborhood, the TV kind where you can stop at the Kroger down the block and run into someone you know, but I have to say these last few weeks I’ve rather liked it.

Anyway, sometime after 1 p.m., since Tim had the car, my freelance buddy Carrie gave me a (5-minute) ride home, and then since I had tons of book-club eats leftover in the fridge, she came with me inside, as I checked the mailbox and grabbed packages from the porch and placed field greens on the counter. The giant box, marked from Amazon, held the spiralizer I’ve been wanting for years, have had pinned in my dream board on Pinterest, have asked for at various holidays and on gift lists. So before either of us even started eating salad, I was breaking open the box and squealing about how much I couldn’t wait to give this thing a go. It only costs $35 but yet it’s always seemed such a splurge: Who really needs a spiralizer? It just makes stuff look pretty! What’s the big deal?

Vibrant Table's Zucchini Spaghetti with Nectarines and Pumpkin Seed Pesto
Vibrant Table's Zucchini Spaghetti with Nectarines and Pumpkin Seed Pesto

Today, in the middle of the afternoon, Tim and I broke it in and, let me tell you, I am loooooooving with so many Os inside this unnecessary kitchen gadget. It’s easy to clean, easy to put together and take apart, not that big and, most notably, so incredible at turning something like an oblong zucchini into crazy-long, curly strands of noodly pasta(-esque) fun. In the 5 to 10 minutes I spent churning out zucchini noodles (“zoodles” they are also called!), Tim and I got talking about inventions like these—Who comes up with them? If I lived a long life, I’d probably never dream up something like this! Also, why don’t restaurants serve them? Even in all the hippie, fermented, vegetarian, vegan and organic restaurants we’ve searched out in the last few years, we can’t remember ever seeing zucchini noodles on a menu. Have you?

Fittingly, we bought it right around the time that we have been cooking from Golubka’s Anya Kassoff’s new book, The Vibrant Table, which launches June 10 and which has a marvelous recipe for zucchini spaghetti with peaches and pumpkin seed pesto mixed throughout. We subbed in the peaches for what was originally nectarines but kept most everything else the same, and, boy, what a perfect, light, refreshing lunch to eat on a 90-degree day in Nashville! Tim and I heaped big piles on our plates, touched them up with salt and pepper, and sat side by side on our sofa, as unsure as ever about what the future holds for us, home-wise, but currently, thankfully, surrounded by a neighborhood we’ve grown to love.

The Vibrant Table
The Vibrant Table Cookbook
Vibrant Table's Zucchini Spaghetti with Peaches and Pumpkin Seed Pesto

ps. heyo what’s the coffee shop? I’m glad you asked! Check it out and give our ‘hood some love.

The Vibrant Table's Zucchini Spaghetti with Peaches and Pumpkin Seed Pesto

By: FoodLovesWriting.com

Serving Size: 4 servings

The Vibrant Table's Zucchini Spaghetti with Peaches and Pumpkin Seed Pesto

Adapted from The Vibrant Table, a new cookbook written by Anya Kassoff and photographed by her daughter Masha Davydova, of Golubka. It's always vegetarian, mostly vegan and sometimes raw (and I would add stunningly beautiful to flip through). I've known Anya in the blog world for a few years now, and I like her for two reasons: she is always kind, surprisingly kind in fact, and also she has a rational, balanced philosophy on food. If you get her book, read the first few pages of introduction, and you'll see what I mean.

Ingredients:

    for the pumpkin seed pesto:
  • 1 tablespoon coconut oil, melted
  • 1 cup (160 g) raw, unsalted pumpkin seeds (pepitas)
  • 1/4 teaspoon sea salt
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 cup packed fresh basil leaves
  • 2 tablespoons water
  • 1 tablespoon freshly squeezed lemon juice
  • 1/2 garlic clove, minced
  • for the zucchini spaghetti noodles (or, zoodles!)
  • 2 small to medium zucchinis (about 1 1/2 pounds or 680 g)
  • 2 ripe organic peaches (if not organic, peel skin), pitted and sliced
  • Fresh basil leaves, for garnish

Directions:

Preheat the oven to 375°F (190°C).

In a baking dish, combine melted coconut oil with pumpkin seeds and salt. Toast for 10 minutes, or until seeds are puffed up and golden. Let cool slightly.

In a food processor, grind pumpkin seeds until they're what Anya calls the size of small breadcrumbs. Then add olive oil, basil, water, lemon juice and garlic. Blend until mixture is like a smooth paste. If you want it a little thinner, add more oil or lemon juice.

To make the zucchini noodles, use a spiral slicer (this one we bought recently) to create about 5 cups of raw noodles from 2 zucchini.

Toss your zucchini noodles with about 5 tablespoons of the pesto (extra can be refrigerated for up to 3 days) in a large bowl. Add peach slices, and garnish with basil and small dollops of extra pesto, if desired. We also added salt and black pepper to taste.

http://foodloveswriting.com/2014/05/31/the-vibrant-tables-zucchini-spaghetti-with-peaches-and-pumpkin-seed-pesto/

*We received a complimentary copy of The Vibrant Table. All opinions expressed are our own.

Shanna Mallon started Food Loves Writing back in 2008, as a way to remember her grandma and write about her life through food. Since then it's become a place leading her to a lifestyle of eating whole foods, a new home in Nashville and the love of her life, Tim. Follow Shanna on Twitter @foodloves, keep up with Food Loves Writing on Facebook and stay inspired with the monthly newsletter.

This Post Has 29 Comments

  1. molly yeh

    i love that idea of working at a coffee shop with other work-from-home people! that sounds so fun!!!! now i want to hunt some others down and start a club… isn’t the vibrant table amazing?!?!? i am making the chickpea crepes tonight :)

  2. Amanda Paa

    i am so excited for summer squash! i echo your wish of inventing some amazing tool like the spiralizer. this books looks to be beautiful. i definitely need it, especially so i can make this recipe!

  3. erin

    Every time I’m on Amazon I stare at the spiralizer (and that is no exaggeration). I need to just add it to the order next time- I’m tired of this julienne peeler non-sense. And these photos, you guys, these photos. (and of course the book- I’ve looked over every recipe and love it!)

  4. Abby

    Beautiful post. (And the cookbook looks wonderful.) I love what you said about getting used to the feel of a small neighborhood–I grew up in suburbs outside Cleveland, which very much felt sprawling and distant. Now that we live in Providence, we see practically everyone we know on a weekly basis while out on walks or errands. Plus, everyone in RI seems to know everyone else…it feels very small and close-knit.

  5. Lisa Cohen // Life is in the Details

    This looks delicious and uh-oh, now I’m going to have to add spiralizer to my wish list of kitchen gadgets. I try really hard to have a minimum number of tools that each have more than one use but zucchini noodles look like so much fun that I just may have to break my own rule! Hate when that happens. LOL!

    1. Shanna Mallon

      Lisa! It’s amazing. I feel totally the same way, trust me, and we have limited storage space with all the gadgets I keep acquiring (why did I want a rice cooker?) but the spiralizer is special. Get one!

  6. Abigail

    I love your whole website. Everything about it is just what I love! Just when I became interested in going wheat free my manager at work told me about you when I was always telling her about my new discoveries!

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