Rotini con zucchine et pesto di spinaci

This will be my last post before I fly to France, for my bi-yearly trip to visit the family.

I discovered this pasta while looking for an alternative for a gluten-free client. It’s basically pasta made with quinoa, amaranth and brown rice flour. At first I was curious as to what its texture and taste would be. I know brown rice pasta tends to be chewy, so this flour mixture intrigued me. I have to say that I loved it right away, at the first bite. I rinsed it with cold water after when I drained it, to avoid any stickiness. Then I prepared it like regular wheat pasta. I love its texture, a bit chewy but firm.

I had tons of baby spinach so being a leafy green, I thought to use them for pesto. Then to add more green, a few zucchini ended up in there too. I have to say that I adore this dish combination…and the color is so vibrant, it’s a simple dish to lift your spirit. When I eat clean, fresh food, I feel energized and happy. I did not add nuts in the pesto, simply because I ate almonds in the morning, so I did not want to add extra. You can certainly add some walnuts, pine nuts, or even pistachios.

Ingredients for 2

  • 200 g rotini
  • 3 zucchini (cut lengthwise then crosswise)
  • 1 tbs olive oil
  • 1-2 tbs vegetable broth

For the pesto

  • 1.5 cups baby spinach
  • 2 tbs olive oil
  • juice and zest of 1 meyer lemon
  • 1 tbs nuts (optional)
  • 1 tbs parmesan cheese (freshly grated)
  • salt and pepper


For the spinach pesto

Mix all ingredients in a blender except for lemon zest. At the end, when the pesto is done and homogenous, add lemon zest.

For the remaining of the recipe

Heat olive oil in a pan, add zucchini and a few tbs broth. Cover at medium temperature and let cook until zucchini are tender but not mushy (about 5-7 minutes). Adjust with salt and pepper.

Bring large pot of salted water to a boil. Add pasta, cook for about 7 minutes and drain. In a mixing bowl, mix pasta with zucchini and pesto.