Lemon Garlic Zucchini Pasta

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While I was on vacation I read a great book, Still Alice by Lisa Genova. I thought I'd fill you in since a few of you (okay, one of you (thanks Reb!)) asked what book I was reading on vacation. Still Alice is the story of a woman diagnosed with early onset Alzheimer's disease and her day to day struggles.  The book puts you in Alice's shoes and gives you perspective to what it's like to live with Alzheimer's.  She wanted everyone around her to know that she is still the person she has always been even though she has this "diagnosis."  I would recommend this book to anyone, but especially to a friend of someone who has Alzheimer's disease.  My grandfather passed away a few years ago after battling with Alzheimer's for about 5 years.  Though he had Alzheimer's, he was still the grandpa I knew and loved the day he passed.  Read more about Still Alice at Lisa Genova.com and for more information on Alzheimer's visit http://www.alz.org/.
5 years ago: with my grandparents, mom and aunt on a family cruise to Alaska (one of my most memorable vacations)

So, what's for dinner?  Zucchini!  Need something to do with that Garden Zucchini?  Well mine's not from the garden, just some organic grocery store zucchini.  Still good none the less (although nothing tops garden produce).   Speaking of garden, my tomato plants are going wild and we have recently picked our first pea pods.  Yay! 

Back to the zucchini.  Why not try this Lemon Garlic Zucchini Pasta with Mushrooms & Pine Nuts (for some reason, I always feel the need to list every ingredient)?   It was my first time substituting zucchini for pasta and I really didn't miss the noodles.  I will definitely be exploring this option with other pasta dishes in the future.  Great for all of the gluten free goddesses out there or if you are just trying to lower your carbs or simply eat more veggies.  I am doing the latter. 
Use a peeler or mandolin to peel the zucchini (skin and all) into long pasta like ribbons until you reach the seedy part.  I didn't know if a peeler would make the "pasta" too thin, but it worked out just fine and was really easy.
 Vibrant colored Zucchini Pasta at serving.  
The best part is you can still twist it on your fork like regular pasta. 

Lemon Garlic Zucchini Pasta with Mushrooms & Pine Nuts
serves 2 or 4 side dishes

2 medium sized zucchinis (I was worried this wouldn't be enough, but it was fine for 2 full servings)
3 T Garlic infused Grapeseed Oil (I used Wildtree brand, you could also use a garlic infused olive oil)
1 c chopped mushrooms
1/2 lemon
2-3 T roughly chopped basil
2 T pine nuts (toasted)
Sea salt & Fresh Cracked Pepper
Parmesan Cheese (optional)


Start by peeling the zucchini (skin on) into pasta size ribbons until you reach the seedy part.  Set aside.  Heat a medium pan with 1 T garlic oil.  Sautée mushrooms until softened.  Set aside (I transferred to a larger pan on very low heat).  In the mushroom pan heat 1 more T garlic oil.  Sautée half of the zucchini for 2 - 4 minutes until slightly softened (you still want a little crunch).  Add the finished "pasta" to the mushrooms.  Repeat with the rest of the zucchini.  Combine with mushrooms and zucchini.  Squeeze 1/2 lemon juice over the "pasta" mixture.  Salt and Pepper.  Add Basil and Pine nuts.  Mix.  Top with freshly grated Parmesan if desired.

Would go along perfectly with some lemon basil garlic marinated chicken breast! 

Bon Appétit! 

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