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Middle Eastern Sautéed Spinach

19 Feb

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Simple ingredients and preparation yield delicious results. I learned this recipe from an Israeli woman several years ago. She told me that this is a traditional way to cook a variety of greens, so feel free to experiment – just adjust cooking times accordingly.

Time: 10 minutes               Serves: 4

Ingredients


  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 4 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 pound baby spinach leaves
  • sea salt, to taste
  • crushed red pepper flakes, to taste
  • 2 tbsp lemon juice

How to make it


  • Heat oil in a skillet over medium heat. Add garlic and cook, stirring, for 1-2 minutes being careful not to let it brown.
  • Add spinach and toss to coat with oil & garlic. Cook, stirring occasionally, for about 2 minutes until all of the spinach is wilted. Season to taste with sea salt and red pepper. Add lemon juice and stir to incorporate.
  • Remove from heat and serve.

 

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Cheesy Spinach Stuffed Tomatoes

1 Feb

As I often do, I studied some recipes & put my own spin on them. The results were just downright delicious. This makes eating your veggies rather enjoyable.

Time: 30 minutes              Serves: 4

Ingredients


  • 4 whole medium-large red tomatoes
  • 6 oz. fresh spinach, chopped fine
  • 1 tsp minced garlic
  • 1/4 cup (or a bit less) water
  • 1/4 cup white wine
  • 1/4 cup Parmesan cheese, grated
  • 1/4 cup feta cheese (garlic & herb)
  • 1/4 cup bread crumbs (Panko), plus a couple pinches
  • 2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • a couple pinches of salt
  • cooking spray

How to make it


  • Preheat oven to 375F.
  • Cut the tops off whole tomatoes. Carefully scoop out inside of tomato leaving wall about 1/2 inch thick. Sprinkle with salt and turn upside down on a dish.
  • Heat oil in a saute pan over medium heat, be sure to coat entire pan. Add spinach and garlic. Mix well & allow to cook for about two minutes. Add water & wine and let simmer for a few minutes.
  • Prepare baking dish by spraying cooking spray.
  • Remove spinach & garlic from heat and pour into small mixing bowl. Add Parmesan, Feta, and bread crumbs (all but the extra pinches). Mix well. Add extra cheese and/or bread crumbs as needed/desired.
  • Spoon mixture into tomatoes til they are past the brim and round the tops. Sprinkle with remaining bread crumbs. Bake for 20-25 minutes. Keep an eye on them so they do not brown too much. Allow them to cool a bit as they pack a lot of heat just out of the oven.
  • These can be made into appetizers using smaller tomatoes such as the cherry variety.

Spinach Salad with Mustard Agave Vinaigrette

22 Nov

This is a colorful, healthy salad with great textures and flavors. Perfect as an entree or side dish, especially nice during pomegranate season.

Time: 5 minutes     Serves: 2

Ingredients


  • Salad


  • 8 oz. baby spinach leaves
  • 1 cup pomegranate seeds
  • 1/2 cup almonds (raw slivers)
  • 2 oz. feta cheese crumbles
  • Dressing


  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 tbsp apple cider vinegar
  • 2 tsp Dijon mustard
  • 1-2 tsp Agave nectar (to taste – how sweet you’d like it)
  • sea salt & black pepper (freshly ground) to taste

How to make it


  • Dressing


  • Mix ingredients well.
  • Salad


  • Assemble: spinach, pom seeds, almonds, feta. Drizzle with dressing.
  • Health Benefits


  • Here are just a few of the health benefits of the ingredients: Spinach and pomegranates are rich in antioxidants, almonds are high in fiber and protein and improve brainpower and all are heart healthy. Apple Cider Vinegar (along with pomegranates and almonds) reduce bad cholesterol, as does Agave nectar (which has many other benefits as it has low glycemic impact, and has anti-inflammatory & immune system boosting capabilities).

Creamed Spinach

10 Jun

I know there are a lot of creamed spinach recipes out there and this is just my version. It was my first time making this and I wanted it to be creamy & flavorful without being too heavy and it was just that.

Time: 10 minutes         Serves: 4

Ingredients


  • 2 tbsp butter, divided
  • 1 tbsp flour
  • 1/2 cup milk (I used 2%)
  • 1 tbsp half & half
  • 1/8 tsp white pepper
  • 1/4 tsp nutmeg
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1/2 medium onion, diced
  • 10 oz baby spinach
  • sea salt to taste

How to make it


  • Melt one tbsp butter in a saucepan over medium heat. Add flour and whisk until smooth. Slowly whisk in milk. Cook until thickens, about 3-5 minutes. Add nutmeg, pepper, and half & half. Stir to mix and cover, remove from heat & set aside.
  • Melt remaining butter in a skillet over medium heat. Add onion and cook until tender and just beginning to brown, about 6-8 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add garlic and cook for another minute. Add spinach a little at a time, turning with tongs until all is added and just wilted. Remove from heat and pour sauce over. Stir to combine. Season with salt to taste.

Spinach-Dill Pie

27 May

This recipe is so versatile and so very tasty! It can be served for breakfast/brunch, as an appetizer, a wonderful side dish or just a tasty snack. Original recipe by Martha Stewart from wholeliving.com.

Time: 15min prep, 1 hour cook         Serves: 6-8

Ingredients


  • 10 oz fresh baby spinach, tough stems removed – roughly chopped
  • 1 tbsp butter
  • 1 small-medium onion, diced
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 cup ricotta cheese
  • 1 cup parmesan cheese, grated
  • 2 eggs + 2 egg whites (large)
  • 2 tbsp flat-leaf parsley, chopped
  • 1/2 cup dill, chopped
  • 1/4 tsp cumin
  • 1/2 tsp coarse salt
  • 1/4 tsp black pepper, freshly ground
  • 8 sheets phyllo dough, thawed
  • cooking spray

How to make it


  • Preheat oven to 375F. Heat butter in large skillet over low-medium heat. Add onion & cook until tender & beginning to caramelize. Add garlic and cook for about a minute. Add spinach and cook until wilted & bright green, about 2 minutes. Transfer to a colander to cool & drain.
  • In a medium bowl, combine ricotta, eggs & egg whites, parsley, dill, Parmesan, cumin, salt and pepper. Stir in cooled spinach mixture.
  • Lightly coat a 9-inch (Pyrex) pie plate with cooking spray. Place one sheet of dough in plate, spray and repeat with remaining 7 sheets spraying between each layer. Trim edges with scissors, leaving a slight overhang. Spoon filling into the dish, spreading evenly. Spray outer edge of dough. Bake until golden brown & filling is set, about one hour. Cool for at least 15 minutes before cutting.