(By the way, did you know you can freeze lemon juice. Just defrost the cubes as needed.)
Besides the time needed to let the zucchini release water (and the shrimp to marinate), this is very quick to make. Releasing some of the liquid from the zucchini ensures a less soggy noodle -- a tip I learned from The Clothes Make the Girl back when I made my first zucchini pasta dish. (Oh, and it was good!) Really, if you wanted, you could skip this step and just mix the noodles in cold (without cooking them). It won't be a hot dish, but should still taste good. Tomatoes are really good in this (so feel free to add them in). Sadly, I suspect I'm having issues with all the tomatoes I've been eating. Once summer is over I may have to eliminate them to find out. My Italian ancestors will be turning over in their graves...
To make zucchini noodles, I use a julienne peeler like THIS. You could also use a spiral slicer such as THIS.
Lemon-Garlic Shrimp with Zucchini Noodles and Spinach
serves 2 printable recipe
2 medium zucchini (about 2 1/2 cups noodles)
12-15 large shrimp, peeled and deveined (about 1/2 lb)
1/2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil (or melted ghee)
1-3 garlic cloves, crushed or grated (I use 3)
1 tbsp minced fresh parsley
1-2 tbsp lemon juice
Zest from 1/2 lemon
1 tbsp ghee or coconut oil (or butter)
1 1/2 - 2 cups baby spinach (optional)
salt and pepper, to taste (omit pepper for AIP)
How to make:
Defrost, peel, and devein the shrimp if needed. Crush or grate garlic with a zester/grater (this is the one I use). Mix together olive oil, garlic, 1 tbsp lemon juice, zest, parsley, and salt and pepper and marinate for about 20-30 minutes. Make noodles from zucchini using a julienne peeler or spiral slicer (or cut into thin strips). Place noodles in a strainer or colander. Sprinkle noodles with salt, toss and let sit for 10-20 minutes to release liquid. (Skip this step if you don't plan to cook your zucchini.)
Drain water from zucchini and pat dry with paper towels. Squeeze water out gently. This helps so your pasta isn't watery. (See this post for another tip to avoid watery noodles.) Heat ghee over medium heat. Add shrimp with marinade and cook for about 30 seconds. Flip the shrimp, cook for another 30 seconds. Set shrimp aside and add the zucchini noodles to the pan (adding more ghee as needed). Cook for about minute to soften noodles. Add spinach and parsley and the shrimp. Toss until shrimp is pink and opaque, noodles are soft, and spinach is wilted, about another minute or two. Add salt and pepper to taste and squeeze on other tbsp of lemon juice to taste. Garnish with extra lemon zest if desired.
Without marinating shrimp: Saute garlic in ghee over low-med heat. After about a minute, add shrimp and lemon juice, season with salt and pepper, and saute for about 1 minute. Remove and set aside shrimp. Add zucchini noodles and lemon zest (with extra ghee if needed) and saute for about a minute. Toss in shrimp, spinach, and parsley and saute just until spinach is wilted and shrimp is cooked through. Add additional salt and pepper as needed.
Update: I now use the Paderno World Cuisine A4982799 Tri-Blade Plastic Spiral Vegetable Slicer to make my noodles.. You can make all kinds of different noodles with it. Definitely worth it if you are grain-free and miss noodles. You don't need one, but I am loving mine. (I got it on sale.) Find it HERE.
Find my post featuring 60+ Spiralizer Recipes and more about the Paderno Spiral Slicer HERE.
Have you ever tried zucchini noodles or spaghetti squash as a pasta alternative? To me, it will never compare to real pasta, but it's a nice alternative for those of us that can't (or choose not to) eat gluten. Come back and let me know if you like this recipe!
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Shared at: Gluten Free Wednesdays, Natural Family Friday, Make your Own Monday, Fat Tuesday, Gluten-Free Tuesday, Thank Goodness It's Monday, Allergy Free Wednesday, Paleo AIP Recipe Roundtable
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