Wednesday, May 23, 2012

Backyard Spring Greens and Pasta

This quick and easy pasta dish is a staple in our house - especially when the first spring greens show up at Farmer's Markets and (for some of you lucky people) in your back yards.
Sadly with my move last year, I "downsized" my yard a great deal - and lost garden space, but I'm experimenting with patio plants and container gardening, hopefully resulting in something edible once the weather warms up.

  I DID find a little clump of edible back-yard "weeds" though, and have been using them happily throughout this wet, rainy spring. If you ever get a chance to try "Lamb's Quarters" (also known less flatteringly as "goosefoot" or pigweed") it's really delicious and comparable to spinach.

 Farmer's Markets sometimes carry this grey-green relative of amaranth. If you know what you're looking for, and have unsprayed weed-filled areas around your house, it's entirely likely you have some growing wild, right in your back yard!

Try this pasta with chard, spinach, wild greens or whatever combination you have on hard. It's all good!

 Easy Spring Pasta

8 ounces uncooked pasta of your choice
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 Tablespoon vegan margarine
1/4 cup ground or crushed almonds, pistachios or nut of your choice
4 - 5 cups washed baby greens of your choice, still damp
2 Tablespoons lemon juice
2 Tablespoons water
2 teaspoons grated lemon peel
OPTIONAL: 1 cup cooked garbanzos
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon pepper

Cook pasta according to package directions. Meanwhile, in a large skillet, saute garlic in margarine until tender. Add crushed nuts and stir a bit until just starting to heat thru - do NOT let the nuts brown.
Add the greens, lemon juice, water, peel, salt and pepper; cook 2-3 minutes longer or until greens are wilted. Drain pasta. Add to skillet; Add garbanzos if using, toss to coat. Add a bit of olive oil if too dry.
Yield: 6 servings.

7 comments: said...

yum! that looks delicious! thanks for sharing!

Flo said...

I like simple recipe like this one !
Thanks for the tips about Lamb's quarter, I didn't know it is edible.
It is funny because I see patch of it everywhere in my area !

Tofu Hunter said...

I made an almost identical recipe the other day, but added a head of roasted cauliflower cut small. It's a winner!

radioactivegan said...

I love lamb's quarters! But I'm afraid to try to identify my own; I haven't seen them often enough to be really sure that I'm right.

Mary Mackey said...

I can't wait to try it! I'm making the commitment today. My friend Jill Halvorson recommended I follow you to get good healthy recipies. Thank You:) Mary

Tofu Mom (AKA Tofu-n-Sprouts) said...

Mary - welcome to the wonderful world of vegan wonderfulness!!
PLEASE PLEASE do not hesitate to contact me if there are ANY questions you have!!

Ellie Hamilton said...

I love lamb's quarters! It tastes like a hybrid of spinach and asparagus. Delicious and very nourishing! I'm always thrilled to find it.