white bean and basil valentine’s day pasta

February 14, 2012

Oh hey — Happy Valentine’s Day!

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While thinking about the recipe I wanted to post for today, I figured out that I’m pretty much the lamest person in the world because I don’t do themed posts for holidays very frequently. What is wrong with me? Couldn’t I have put this pasta in a red bowl and called it a day? I didn’t dye anything red or pink — I didn’t stuff anything with ten pounds of chocolate. I didn’t even make anything heart shaped. I’m a Valentine’s Day scrooge. If you’d rather skip over this pasta all together, I beg you not to. In fact, go make these pancakes and then come back here so you can plan your dinner.

If you are celebrating Valentine’s Day today with your sweetie (or going solo this year — you go girl! [or boy!]), pasta is where it is at. I made pasta for the Husband last year on our first Valentine’s Day as a married couple — the dinner was good, the night was a disaster. I ended up crying because he was 30 minutes late from work, and I am a hormonal, scary mess of a woman. That poor man.

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Whenever I think about pasta, it always makes me feel like romance is in the air. Perhaps it’s because The Lady and the Tramp was my all time favorite movie as a youngster — because, really when you think about it, slurping pasta up and trying not to get it all over your outfit that you spent an hour trying to pick out earlier in the evening is not cool. Pasta is not in the least bit sexy.

Thankfully I’m married, and my husband thinks it’s cute when I spill on myself (uhhh, probably not — a girl can dream), so I’m all for pasta on Valentine’s Day.

Oh, and on a totally unrelated note, if you’re wondering if kids still do the whole Valentine’s thing at schools, they do. They make awesome Valentine’s Day boxes, bring them to school, and do the whole she-bang you remember as a child. I bet your teacher didn’t have a Valentine’s Day box though. I do — and I made the mail slot big enough so my students can fit full sized bars of dark chocolate into it. I wish I were joking, and that I didn’t really tell them that – but I did. I apparently have no shame.

Back the the pasta — gosh, I need to take a concentration cocktail today.

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This pasta is filled to the brim with amazingly delicious things. Like fresh basil. And don’t you even roll your eyes at me for buying $2.99 basil at Trader Joe’s. It is Valentine’s Day after all people — splurge a little. You’ll feel like you’re living on the edge.

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This dish also has slow roasted tomatoes, which have been chilling (literally) in my freezer since the summer when I had tomatoes coming out of my ears from my garden. If you don’t have time to slow roast tomatoes, just use a 15 oz. can of fire roasted diced tomatoes. Done and done. Oh — and white beans! Everyone has white beans, right? If not, use another kind of bean — because apparently I’m allowing you to change this entire dish based on what you have in your own pantry. Please make sure that you do not — I repeat DO NOT — skimp on the fresh garlic. I’ll even allow you to use the minced garlic that comes in the little jars, but the granulated stuff won’t work for this. I’m sorry, it will be ruined. **

**I’m lying, but the fresh garlic is delicious

Moral of the story? Make this for your Valentine this year — you won’t be disappointed.

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Go make your dinner.

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