I bought a julienne peeler...
... I'm officially fancy.
And because I loved it so much, several of my closest friends and family are also now fancy. (It was also under 10 bucks so 'said friends' don't go expecting a KitchenAid any time soon)
I am not ashamed to say when I first purchased the julienne peeler EVERYTHING became a noodle. Zucchini. Carrots. Squash. Potatoes. Celery. EVERYTHING. My only regret is it took me so long to get a picture up here of something I made with it. I know people hate adding new gadgets but its super small and you will use it. A lot. Promise. Raw on salads or as pictured in place of spaghetti.
And it really does make you feel kinda fancy.
I'm also a little bit fancy because I am just coming off of a weekend at the IFBC. It is a whole new experience to attend conferences for personal development versus those that are/were professionally mandated. It was inspiring and encouraging to meet such talented people who had really turned their passion into their profession. I took away some great insights on how to improve my photography, cooking and technical skills. The moments of interaction with the incredibly talented chef Dorie Greenspan and the equally elite photographer Andrew Scrivani were also once in a lifetime opportunities.
The talent was brilliant. The logistics were well planned. The generosity of sponsors was unmatched by anything I had ever seen. There was a bit of gap in the education focus for me personally and it would have been great to see a bit more whole food inclusion. That said, the business side of me completely understands the significant brand presence.
ANY time, however, I can take 60+ hours and fully devote it to something that is truly just a hobby in this public domain, I am grateful and appreciative. Mister and Little had a "what happens on boys weekend stays in ..blah blah blah" code where I was only assured whatever 'ugly' food was consumed was offset by the "whole" food left in the freezer for them. I missed them both and am so blessed to have such a supportive network of friends & family that embrace my dabbling.
The September cover of Chatelaine inspired this recipe. As did the mammoth zucchinis that kept making their way into my home. To make this, I estimate a couple of average sized zukes & at least a large carrot per person. Don't pitch the leftover nubs. (this will make sense when you buy this tool. and you should. right now) I just grated the leftover carrot & zuke nubs and threw them into some cookies for Little. Some sites will recommend you blanch or salt the zucchini to get the water out. I have tried both ways and I like them next to raw. Just heated really. The pesto is very simple, as is the chicken. (or both are easily bought ready made if it's that kind of day)
And take the time to roast the tomatoes. Its worth it...
...and also kinda fancy.
Pesto Carrot and Zucchini Noodles w/ Roasted Tomatoes & Pulled Chicken (Serves 2 and 1/2)
1 pint of cherry/grape tomatoes or 2 large tomatoes 1/2 cup plus 2 Tablespoons of extra virgin olive oil 2 garlic cloves, peeled 4 cups packed basil leaves 1/2 cup grated parmesan juice of one small lemon 1 teaspoon teaspoon salt 5 medium zucchinis (green/yellow), julienned with peel 3 medium to large carrots, julienned 1 and 1/2 cups of fresh arugula 2 cups of shredded, cooked chicken
1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees. 2. Cut the tomatoes into bite size pieces. Toss the tomatoes with 1 tablespoon of olive oil and spread out on a cookie sheet. Sprinkle with 1/2 tsp of salt. Place in the oven and roast for about 15 to 20 minutes, checking half way. 3. To make the pesto, put the garlic cloves, basil, parmesan, lemon juice and remaining salt into a food processor. Pulse until finely chopped. Then, with the motor running, slowly drizzle in 1/2 cup of oil, adjusting for consistency as desired. Set aside. 4. In a large saute pan, heat up the final tablespoon of oil. Toss in the juilenned zucchini and carrots and heat for about 2 minutes. Stir in desired amount of pesto, shredded chicken and roasted tomatoes. Toss and turn over medium heat until well combined and dish has reached desired temperature. 5. When ready to serve, toss with fresh arugula.
Note: To make quick shredded chicken at home, place bone in chicken (recommend drums and thighs unless breasts are brined) in a dutch oven with about 1 and 1/2 cups of unsalted chicken stock and a bay leaf. Bring to a rapid boil, then simmer until chicken is done (about 10-15 minutes). Remove, cool and shred.