Walnut zucchini pesto noodles with grilled chicken

Sticking with my experimenting in julienne peeling as a substitute for a proper spiralizer (as with previous chicken tikka masala with squash noodles), I tried out a pesto zucchini noodle recipe also from inspiralized.com. I followed the recipe relatively closely, but decided to add grilled chicken to make it a bit more satiating as a full dinner meal.

I thought it would be nice to marinate the chicken in some of the pesto used for the noodles, so I made the pesto ahead of time and took out about a quarter cup to marinate the chicken with. Probably would have been better to marinate the chicken for several hours or overnight, but I was fairly unorganized and only bought ingredients in the late afternoon on the evening I was making this dish, so I only marinated it for about an hour to an hour and a half, but still turned out good. I used 3 chicken breasts that were a total of 1.3lbs.

Here’s the pesto ingredients before and after blending:

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The little “bits” are the walnuts, as I already had Diamond’s finely diced walnuts rather than walnut halves; and I measured out a 1/4 cup serving by weight, which is less than the recipe calls for but you fit more into a cup measurement with smaller pieces than you do with bigger pieces. Also, I was ghetto and used dry basil from the jar rather than fresh basil leaves.

Here’s the marinated chicken on the BBQ and sliced up after the fact:

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I had the same issue as I had with the butternut squash and the julienne peeler, in that once it got smaller, it got trickier (still thinking about getting a full spiralizer!), and I ended up leaving the cores of the zucchinis and just chopping them into little slices and throwing them in after the fact with the tomatoes. I used 5 zucchinis (not counting the one already used for the pesto) and still ended up with a LOT of noodles in spite of still having a lot for the sliced bits.

Zucchini partially-julienned, on the stove, and with the remainder sliced up:

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On the stove was a bit tricky because it really felt like a lot more noodles once transferred to the pan than in the bowl I’d peeled them into, and I would have gone for a bigger pan if I’d been expecting that. The recipe says only to toss them around until warmed, rather than thoroughly cooking through, and I think I failed a bit at that because there were so many that the top ones weren’t getting heated, and I was having to toss it around so long to warm all the noodles that I think it ended up cooking more than it should have (some liquid was appearing in the pan), but still good.

Anyway, here are the noodles once the remaining pesto was stirred in (you’ll notice a bit of wateriness from overcooking the noodles), and with the zucchini slices and tomato bits added, and with the final touch of the chicken:

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Anyway, it was good! Despite me still trying to figure out this julienned vegetable noodles thing and misjudging the required pan size, it ended up tasty and satisfying (which may have been helped by my addition of chicken) while still feeling light and healthy.

If portioned out evenly into 4 servings, based on my particular ingredient choices and measurements/size of vegetables (weighed), and including the chicken, the nutritional info is:

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