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A part of me is sad that a year ago, I would have made something, definitely dessert, that was green for St. Patrick’s Day.  Festive food for this holiday always puts me in mind of green icing or something rainbow or shamrocks.

Alas, with this healthier lifestyle comes zero chance of dumping artificial colors into anything.  But I’m being dramatic; I do not regret putting such things into my body, only that I can’t present something cute and green this holiday.  Perhaps this just means more creative thinking in the future.

For now, though slightly devoid of holiday charm, we will have green (duh!) spinach fettuccine! (With tomatoes because I thought all green was kinda boring.)

Spinach Fettuccine with Broccoli and Tomatoes

  • 6 oz. spinach fettuccine
  • 1/2 large head broccoli, cut into florets
  • Handful of grape or cherry tomatoes, cut in half
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 2 tbsp extra-virgin olive oil
  • Squeeze of fresh lemon juice

Cook the fettuccine according to instructions – I cooked mine for about 6 minutes to al dente.  Meanwhile, lightly steam the broccoli florets for about 2-3 minutes on the stove or in the microwave.  Then heat 1 tablespoon of olive oil over medium heat in a large skillet.  Add the minced garlic and cook for about a minute, until it becomes fragrant.  Add the lightly steamed broccoli in with the garlic and oil, and saute it all together for about 2 minutes.  (You can add the tomatoes at this point too if you like them cooked.  I prefer a fresh tomato taste, so I add them later.)  Off the heat, add the cooked pasta and halved tomatoes to the garlic and broccoli and toss.  Finish with 1 tablespoon of olive oil and a squeeze of fresh lemon juice for brightness.

Beside the green theme for St. Patty’s, this dish also represents a bridge between winter and spring.  Broccoli is still at its peak until around April, but the warm weather has brought us tomatoes earlier than usual.  So I tossed them both in this pasta since we’re transitioning into spring.  Although I’m excited about spring and the cornucopia of new produce it brings, a small part of me is not ready to let go of winter quite yet!

This pasta so bright and colorful and earthy.  And easy, like Pasta for Dummies easy.

Happy St. Patrick’s Day!