Dishes are just a bit fancier when they have an edible vessel. Take stuffed peppers, stuffed mushrooms, quinoa salad in an acorn squash, taco salads in a tortilla shell bowl, etc. This recipe is no exception and up to this point I hadn’t ever used a cucumber as a vessel for a recipe, but it works great.
One of the ways that you can significantly reduce your food budget is to make your own snacks. We’ve featured a few recipes already (Homemade Crackers with Sage and Cayenne, Olive Oil and Sea Salt crackers, Flatbread with Garbanzo Flour) that keep you out of the cookie/cracker/chip aisle at the grocery store where we know a TON of money is spent and you stray the most from your grocery list. It’s a whole lot of cravings and eye candy there, so best to stay away.
We decided to find a healthy snack that would work for a family or to bring to a dinner party/tailgate that was more creative than chips and dip, wings or sandwiches. So, we tweaked a pesto and hummus recipe to include carrots instead of the beans and unsalted mixed nuts instead of pine nuts, since we’re trying to cut down the cost. Here’s the recipe:
Carrot Pesto Cucumber Boats
- 2 Large Cucumbers
- 1 Large Carrot
- 2 Small Garlic cloves
- 10 Fresh Basil Leaves
- 1/8 Cup of EVOO
- 1/2 Cup of Unsalted Mixed Nuts
- 1 Tbsp Toasted Sesame Seeds
- Sea Salt and Pepper to Taste
- In a blender or food processor, place carrots, garlic, basil, olive oil and mixed nuts.
- Blend until smooth, stopping to push mix down with a spatula.
- Peel strips off of the cucumber skin and cut off the ends.
- Cut in half lengthwise and scoop out seeds with a spoon.
- Scoop filling into the cucumber boats and slice into 1.5″ pieces.
- Sprinkle generously with sesame seeds and serve immediately, or cover and refrigerate for up to 24 hours.
These sound great, but my daughter is allergic to tree nuts, can you suggest an alternative ingredient?
Good question Nicole. I would say you’d be safe using Pine Nuts, since they aren’t actually tree nuts. Peanuts would also be a good alternative if she’s not allergic to them. Traditional Pesto is made with Pine nuts, so I’d go that route first, but they are NOT cheap 😉