Happy New Year!

So, got any resolutions?  I always do, but I try to keep them reasonable.  I’m going to start the C25K program this year to try to get rid of some of this excess (I’m a tad too pudding-y around the middle … this must go).  I’m also going to try to do one meat-free meal a week.  This will hopefully be good for my middle, the mister’s cholesterol and the planet.  Oh, and our grocery bills.  So, be prepared to see a few more meat-free recipes in the coming months so that we can all try to eat a little cleaner and healthier.

With that in mind, the first recipe has fish, so it’s not totally meat-free, but there is so little in it – but with so much flavor – you really won’t feel like you’re missing much!  And, it’s so flipping EASY!  The most complicated part of the recipe is boiling the pasta.  Seriously, this is a great work-day meal when you need to get dinner in front of you in under 15 minutes.  The recipe below gives a decent-sized portion for four or a big portion for three.

Smoked Salmon Pasta with Chili Crumbs

  • 1/4 lb smoked salmon, pulled or cut into bite-size pieces
  • 1/2 lb dried pasta (I like to use fusilli lunghi, but penne would work fine)
  • 2 big handfulls of baby greens (a mix of baby spinach/chard/arugula is perfect)
  • 1/2 cup dried breadcrumbs
  • 1/2 tsp red pepper flakes
  • olive oil
  • juice of 1-2 lemons

Boil the pasta as directed in well-salted water.  While that’s doing its thing, in a small saucepan over medium heat, add enough olive oil to coat the bottom of the pan plus a bit – probably around a quarter of a cup in total.  Add the red pepper flakes and swirl around to flavor the oil while it heats.  When it starts to sizzle, add the breadcrumbs and cook them in the hot oil until they start to color and toast.

Put the greens in the bottom of the strainer you will use for your pasta – you’re going to use the hot pasta water to wilt them.  When the pasta is cooked, drain over the greens, then quickly toss with the pasta before pouring into a bowl.  Sprinkle in the smoked salmon and pour in the spicy breadcrumbs and hot oil.  Finally, squeeze the lemons over everything and toss thoroughly to incorporate all the flavors and serve!  You can top with a little Parmesan if you like, but you don’t need to.  It’s lovely and light and zingy on its own.

Smoked Salmon Pasta2