Get out of your meal rut: shrimp pasta with asparagus and carrots

photo: clarita

There's nothing worse than a dinner rut.  Most of us have a number of dinners we rotate throughout the week or month.  The reasons for this rotation are often simple.  These are meals that the family eats.  They are often quick and easy to make. We favor them because they are healthy and affordable.  So we may go for months, rotating these select meals over and over again.

Until one day the thought of eating another (fill in the blank) meal becomes so unappealing that we cannot physically make. another. one.

The meals I cook most often contain a meat or fish, grain, and vegetable.  Since I am a lazy cook, these meals appeal to me because they don't require chopping, mincing, or fancy ingredients.  I can whip them up at a moment's notice and they will be eaten.  They are usually great "go to" meals.

But this combination definitely gets boring, so I mix it up once in a while, often with a pasta dish.

Here is the recipe for one of my favorites, and though you do have to chop, I promise you this is a very easy and very quick meal to make.

Shrimp, asparagus, and carrot pasta:

  1. Remove shrimp from freezer and defrost.  Remove tails
  2. Cook pasta according to package directions.  Meanwhile:
  3. Chop onion and garlic
  4. Chop carrots and asparagus.  (I go heavier on the asparagus than the carrots)
  5. Put extra virgin olive oil in medium skillet.  Saute onion and garlic over medium-high heat.  Add sea salt and pepper to taste
  6. When onion and garlic are soft, add carrots and asparagus.  Cook for about 5 minutes, until browned, but still slightly crunchy
  7. Add shrimp to skillet and cook about 2 minutes per side
  8. Spoon pasta into bowls.  Top with shrimp and vegetable mixture.  Sprinkle with freshly grated Pecorino Romano cheese
  9. Don't forget the bottle of red.  After all, life is a celebration, right?  I'd recommend a Pinot Noir.

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