Courgetti with rocket & parsley pesto, smoked mackerel, roasted balsamic tomatoes and walnuts


The final result



    Perfect dinner for 2 on a weekday. Sneaky glass of fizz optional.


Perfect dinner for 2 on a weekday. Sneaky glass of fizz optional.

Very doable

Feeds 2 hungry medium sized people

Not everyone can impress by giving their girlfriend a kitchen appliance for their birthday but my boyfriend succeeded. He got me a spiralizer, what a hero. If you don’t know (definitely wouldn’t blame you if you didn’t) a spiralizer is a device that shreds vegetables into ribbons - big or little, fat or thin using a very sharp blade. The result is something that looks like spaghetti.

No matter how hard it tries, a vegetable masquerading as spaghetti, will never be spaghetti. But there is a place for it in the annals of cookery. I would be the size of Jabba the Hut if I ate pasta as much as I wanted. Spiralized veg gives the same effect, but without the bloat. Winner.

I started with courgettes as they seemed like the easiest way of getting to grips with the thing. Believe me you will never whirl and twirl a vegetable like this again.


2 courgettes

40 g walnuts

40g parmesan

1 clove garlic

4 tbsp olive oil

3 handfuls of parsley

Small handful of rocket

Juice half a lemon

2 smoked mackerel fillets

10 cherry tomatoes on the vine

1 tbsp balsamic vinegar


Put the tomatoes on a baking tray, drizzle with balsamic and roast for half an hour at 180c or until slightly tinged and bursting.

Whiz the walnuts in a food processor or with a mini hand blender. Add the parmesan cut into chunks, garlic and whiz again.

Add the rocket, parsley,olive oil and lemon juice to loosen. Whiz.

You should have a bright green wonderful looking pesto. If its a bit thick, loosen it by adding a tbsp of cold water.

Spiralize the courgettes and blanche for 2 mins in a pan of simmering water.

Drain and stir in the pesto.

Serve by putting some rocket on a plate, put the courgetti on top, tear over the smoked mackerel and top with the balsamic tomatoes. Serve with a good drizzle of olive oil.