2 teaspoonsorganic lemon zest from one medium organic lemon)
2 tablespoonsorganic lemon juice
1⁄2 teaspoonsea salt
4 tablespoonsNatural Grocers Brand Organic Extra Virgin Olive Oil, divided
3medium garlic cloves, minced
1(16-ounce) package frozen peeled and deveined shrimp, thawed
Salt and pepper, to taste
2medium organic zucchini, spiralized
1⁄2 pintorganic grape tomatoes, halved lengthwise
For the pesto
Toast the walnuts over medium-low heat in a large sauté pan for 7-8 minutes, stirring frequently, until lightly toasted. Transfer to a plate and wipe the pan clean.
Remove parsley leaves from the stems and add them to the bowl of a food processor. Discard stems. Pulse until the parsley is well chopped. Add the toasted walnuts, lemon zest, and salt and process until the mixture is uniform, scraping down the sides as necessary. With the machine running, slowly add the lemon juice and 3 tablespoons of olive oil. Set pesto aside.
For the shrimp and zoodles
Pat the shrimp dry with a paper towel and remove tails if desired.
Heat the large sauté pan over medium heat. Once hot, add the remaining tablespoon of olive oil and the garlic. Sauté, stirring frequently, until fragrant, about 30 seconds. Add the shrimp, salt and pepper to taste, and cook, flipping shrimp about halfway through cooking time, until the shrimp are pink and curled, 4-6 minutes total.
Add the zoodles and cook for one minute, stirring frequently. Add the pesto and stir to combine. Add the tomatoes and give the mixture one more stir to fully coat the veggies and shrimp with the pesto. Serve immediately.
Note: If your pan is not large enough to hold all of the shrimp and zoodles at the same time, remove the cooked shrimp from the pan before adding the zoodles. Cook the zoodles for two minutes, stirring frequently. Combine the cooked zoodles, reserved shrimp, pesto, and tomatoes in a large serving bowl and stir to evenly coat the veggies and shrimp with the pesto.
Florencia Pizza Bistro is one of those locally owned neighborhood eateries. Ahwatukee has a lot of these little hidden gems because most of them are located in strip malls. This one has been around for quite some time and resides next door to the popular Melting Pot. They offer three types of pizza – Traditional, Olive Oil (Garlic, Extra Virgin Olive Oil, Mozzarella Cheese with no tomato sauce) and Pesto (Basil Pesto Sauce with no tomato sauce). You can create your own with toppings (over 40 topping choices) or choose from one of their popular specialty pizza creations. Some of the names include the Snow White, Pomodora, Valentinos, Winchester, Clevenger, Malanzane, Bo-Be and the Green-Eyed Chicken. There are many more creations to choose from and they have vegetarian options as well. The dough is house made and their pizzas are thin-crust. I’m more of a thick crust person myself but actually found their thin crust quite enjoyable. They also have panini, calzones, salads and sandwiches if pizza is not on your radar. Their appetizer menu is not incredibly large but they have a nice variety to choose from. I got the mozzarella sticks and felt they were just average. We ordered the Clark’s Classic pizza which consisted of pepperoni and chicken marinated in buffalo sauce. I was a little worried the sauce would soak through the thin crust and make it soggy but it actually held up (even eating it as a leftover the next day). There is a small bar area to the side where you can order a glass of wine or beer. The owner is a Wildcat fan (boo…) and they’ve had fun fundraisers in the past during the annual ASU/UA football game to benefit the local high schools in the area. It wasn’t very busy when I visited but service was pretty good.
My friend and I love looking for good finds at Trader Joe’s. She is the master at coming up with great party snacks from there. Here are a couple of recent items I picked up lately. The first is their pesto and quinoa in a jar. I love putting this on chicken or salads. Quinoa is obviously a big thing these days and I enjoy coming up with new recipes that include it. But to pair it with pesto (one of my favs), I have enjoyed this product. The Kale sprouts have been a great new side item for me. I made them for a friend the other night and we both agreed they are a hit. I’m looking forward to digging up some more extra goodies at the Joe’s.
Pesto’s Pizza & Wine Bar is a little establishment in Chandler that serves up gourmet pizzas and a large selection of wines. The restaurant has some unique decorations and has a fun atmosphere to it. I love the pesto dishes and the calzones. I attended a party tonight where everyone had to wear white.
2 14 1/2 ounce can diced tomatoes with Italian herbs
3 cups (about 10 ounces) sliced almonds, toasted
1 cup grated parmesan cheese
2 cloves garlic, chopped
Grated peel and juice of 1 lemon
6 no-boil lasagna sheets
2 cups shredded mozzarella cheese
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees . In a large skillet, heat 1/4 cup olive oil over high heat. Add the mushrooms, season with salt and pepper and cook until softened, about 3 minutes. Transfer to a medium bowl. Add the tomatoes to the skillet, scraping up any browned bits from the bottom of the pan, and cook until softened, 6 to 7 minutes.
Using a food processor, process the toasted almonds, parmesan, garlic, lemon peel, lemon juice and remaining 1/2 cup olive oil into a coarse paste. Transfer the pesto to a bowl and season to taste with salt and pepper.
In an 8-inch square baking dish, spread half the tomatoes across the bottom. Place 2 lasagna sheets on top. Spread a third of the pesto over the sheets; sprinkle with half the mozzarella and then half the mushrooms. Add another layer of lasagna sheets, pesto, mozzarella and mushrooms. Top with another layer of lasagna sheets, spread with the remaining pesto and then the remaining tomatoes. Cover tightly with foil and bake for 35 minutes. Uncover and bake for 10 minutes more. Let stand for at least 10 minutes before slicing.
My friends the Kredits had a potluck at their house and I brought this lasagna. I guess word got I was cooking this dish and people were anticipating me bringing it (I was late of course). It was a hit and I look forward to making in again the future for get togethers. Below are some pictures of some other great food that was there.