Saint Patrick's Day may be tomorrow, but with the sunny weather we've been experiencing throughout the United States, it's not too soon to put some spring green on our plates! These green recipes are festive, so be sure to make enough for leftovers, and they're just as lovely to take advantage of the spring produce that's starting to appear on market stalls.
Many people serve up traditional Irish fare for Saint Patrick's Day, and that's definitely an option, but we prefer these lighter, vibrant dishes -- perfect for Meatless Monday! -- that make partaking in an Irish brew or two a not-so-guilty pleasure.
Start things off with a tasty, seasonal pasta primavera with lemon, fava beans, asparagus and peas. The lighter version of the dish that you've likely seen in half a dozen American restaurants really plays up the vegetables that are coming into season right now. A touch of cream and mascarpone adds some richness to the pasta, and a sprinkling of fresh Parmesan highlights the nuttiness of these new season veggies.
Image: Jon Sullivan
A vegetable quiche is a fantastic lunch or dinnertime dish that's just as tasty cold as hot and is therefore perfect for leftovers -- particularly tomorrow when you might not be so... fresh. But this quiche is fresh as can be, with asparagus, spinach, and just the right amount of feta to lend a piquant flair to the dish.
Green smoothie image via Shutterstock
From the Organic Authority Files
A green smoothie offers a fantastic morning or afternoon boost. This recipe combines almond milk, avocado, easily digestible pea protein and spinach for a tasty smoothie that's bright green and perfectly festive. You might want to make a second tomorrow to add some nutrients to counterbalance all that Irish stout you'll be drinking.
Image: Patryce Bak
In Italy, a frittata is often served for lunch or dinner, but we like this one just as much at breakfast, especially because once it goes into the oven, it's fairly hands-off. Go for the individually-sized ones baked in muffin cups for a yummy addition to your work lunchbox!
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Top image: Jeremy Keith