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Raw parsnip and carrot "fettucine" with pesto for Meatless Monday

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Proponents of a raw diet say that raw foods are higher in vital enzymes -- but it doesn't take a scientist to tell you that raw vegetables are good for you. This recipe (adapted from Eat Raw, Eat Well) is vegan, gluten-free and totally raw except for the sunflower seeds in the pesto, but you can use raw seeds instead of roasted ones. The dish takes quite a bit of prep work, but it's super- easy to make.

See also: Vegan gnocchi pesto bake for a satisfying dinner on Meatless Monday

You will need: 3 large parsnips 4 medium carrots (3 large) 3/4 cup plus 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil (cold-pressed) 2 lemons 1 teaspoon Celtic sea salt 4 cloves garlic 1/2 cup sunflower seeds 1 bunch fresh cilantro 1. Peel the carrots and parsnips. Using a Y-shaped ("slingshot-style") vegetable peeler, peel the carrots and parsnips into long, thin ribbons (lengthwise). Put them in a large bowl as you peel. Juice the two lemons. Add 1 tablespoon of olive oil, 1 teaspoon of lemon juice and 1/4 teaspoon of salt and toss until the vegetables are coated. Set aside to let the ribbons absorb the flavors while you make the pesto. 2. Peel the garlic and place in a food processor. Add the sunflower seeds. Add the remaining lemon juice, olive oil and salt. Process until blended -- but you don't want the sunflower seeds totally pulverized, so don't go too far! 3. Rinse the cilantro and then pull off the leaves and add them to the food processor. Process -- you should have a thick pesto now. Add the pesto to the carrot/parsnip ribbons. Toss until the vegetable ribbons are coated with pesto. You can also make this recipe with a more traditional basil/pine nut pesto -- or experiment with different kinds of vegetables.


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Join the Westword community and help support independent local journalism in Denver.