I’m not Irish but I’m already thinking about St. Patrick’s Day later this week, especially since the rest of my family is Irish. Scarlett couldn’t wait to get a new green shirt and plastic bracelets to wear to our annual St. Patty’s Day dinner. Since we’re always in Marco Island, Florida this time of year we like to hit our favourite seaside restaurant. Snook Inn pulls out all the stops when it comes to St. Patty’s with their salty guitarist belting out Irish tunes, rowdy sun-drenched crowd and lots of green beer (that’s for Mommy). We always have a blast celebrating and Scarlett loves to dance her little heart out.
St. Patty’s Day is also a great marketing tool for me. In addition to having a reason to honor the tiny slice of Irish that my girl inherited from her Daddy (those freckles across her nose are all his), the holiday makes having greens at every meal just another means of celebrating. “Here’s green mac and cheese for St. Patty’s day or try this green smoothie.” Now, in the interest of full disclosure, Scarlett is a great eater and doesn’t turn her nose up at most greens. However, she does still know the difference between them and, let’s say, ice cream. So she has a natural ceiling when it comes to eating them in a day. This little marketing ploy I have each March works out nicely when it comes to gently pushing the envelope beyond her natural limit.
A few weeks ago, I decided that it would be great to come up with my own version of a spinach cake that I sometimes buy in the frozen food section of Whole Foods. Scarlett loves to eat them and I love to heat them in a pinch. We generally eat them at dinner but they are great any time of day. For my version, I decided to make them a mix of spinach and kale. In addition, I mixed in some arborio rice since I had some extra cooked for a risotto dish I was making. I loved how they came out and would pop them into my toaster oven in the morning with our eggs, for a snack and as a side with dinner. Since they have parmesan and were made in my heart muffin tin, Scarlett mindlessly ate them since they were cheesy and cute. And, for once, they weren’t from my freezer.
Kale, Spinach and Rice Cakes
1 cup chopped spinach
1 cup chopped kale
3 cloves garlic, minced
1 tablespoon butter
1/4 cup chopped onion
1/2 cup cooked arborio rice
1/2 cup parmesan cheese
Preheat oven to 400. Using a non-stick cooking spray, grease a muffin pan. Set aside.
In a small pan, place butter over medium heat. Add garlic and onion. Saute for 2 minutes, or until onion is translucent.
Place spinach, kale and butter mixture into food processor. Pulse until finely chopped. Transfer to a medium-sized bowl.
Add rice, eggs and cheese into bowl. Stir until combined.
Pour mixture into prepared muffin tin leaving about 1 inch at the top. Place in the oven and bake f0r 20 minutes, or until set and edges are golden brown. Loosen edges with a knife and turn onto a plate. Serve warm with your favourite eggs.