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Looking for a spiralizer recipe? Try this vegan beet pasta with cilantro pesto

Looking for a spiralizer recipe? Try this vegan beet pasta with cilantro pesto
Cilantro pesto beet fettuccine with arugula and cream dressing. (Los Angeles Times)

Maybe you bought a spiralizer in an attempt to keep that New Year's resolution to eat more vegetables. Or maybe you found one in your holiday stocking, and it's been staring at you from a corner in your kitchen for more than a month now. However you ended up with one, now is as good a time as any to try it.

Since beets are in season, and readily available at your local farmers market, here's a recipe for beet fettuccine with cilantro pesto and an arugula salad with a creamy cashew dressing.

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A large beet is transformed into flat, fettuccine-like noodles via a spiralizer, and puréed cashews and fresh herbs create a dairy-free, creamy dressing for a side salad. And yes, this entire meal is vegan, should that fact fit nicely into all those resolutions.

Total time: 30 minutes plus soaking time for the cashews and draining time for the beets | Serves 2

Note: From Stephen Hauptfuhr at Mooi.

Noodles

1 large beet, peeled (alternatively, you can use 1 large zucchini)

1 teaspoon coarse sea salt (he uses Celtic sea salt)

Cilantro pesto

1/2 cup unfiltered olive oil

1/4 cup apple cider vinegar

1/4 cup nutritional yeast

1 large bunch cilantro

2 cloves garlic minced

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1/8 cup pine nuts

Arugula with cream dressing

1 cup cashews, soaked at least 4 hours, then drained

1 garlic clove

2 tablespoons lemon juice

1 teaspoon coarse sea salt

1 teaspoon dried tarragon

1 teaspoon minced fresh thyme leaves

Water

2 cups packed arugula, gently torn

Cilantro pesto beet fettuccine and final assembly

Beet fettuccine, drained

Cilantro pesto

Arugula salad with cream dressing

Pine nuts for garnish

1. Use a spiralizer or saladacco to cut the beet into long fettuccine noodles. (If using the zucchini, slice it thinly lengthwise into strips about the thickness and width of a fettuccine noodle.)

2. Place the noodles in a bowl and toss with the sea salt. Set the noodles aside for at least 30 minutes to an hour to allow the salt to extract excess water and soften the noodles.

3. Press the noodles gently but firmly in a strainer to extract excess moisture and set aside. (If you have a food dehydrator, you can lightly coat the noodles with olive oil, spread them on a nonstick sheet and dehydrate them at 100 degrees for about 30 minutes to soften even more.)

4. While the noodles are softening, prepare the pesto.

5. In a blender, combine the oil, vinegar and nutritional yeast and blend well. Add the cilantro and garlic and blend as needed for desired thickness and texture.

6. Add the pine nuts and blend quickly to coarsely chop, giving the pesto a thicker texture. Makes about 1 cup pesto. Set aside.

7. Prepare the cream dressing: In the bowl of a food processor, combine the cashews, garlic, lemon juice and sea salt and process until smooth. Add the tarragon and thyme and, with the motor running, add enough water to achieve the desired consistency. (Add less water for a thicker dressing, more for a thinner dressing.) This makes about 1 cup dressing.

8. Place the arugula in a medium bowl and toss with enough dressing to lightly coat (you may not use all the dressing). Set the salad aside while you prepare the rest of the meal.

9. Place the noodles in a large bowl. Stir in a few generous tablespoons of the pesto and mix well, making sure to coat all the noodles with the sauce.

10. Divide the noodles between 2 plates, leaving room for the salad, and spoon more pesto over each serving. Divide the arugula salad between the 2 plates. Garnish the pasta with a sprinkling of pine nuts and serve immediately.

Each serving: 535 calories; 12 grams protein; 24 grams carbohydrates; 6 grams fiber; 46 grams fat; 7 grams saturated fat; 0 cholesterol; 1122 mg. sodium.

Found a problem? Let us know at food@latimes.com

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