Today’s delicious dish – Creamed Spinach
Creamed spinach, a steakhouse favorite, is very easy to make at home. It is a seemingly-fancy dish that is pleasing even to some who think they don’t like spinach. I love creamed spinach with all kinds of meats and fish.
This recipe uses frozen chopped spinach. Be sure you don’t skip the very important step of squeezing out all the liquid you can from the cooked spinach. You can use fresh spinach if you want to. You will need to chop it and you will need to steam it for a few minutes and then squeeze out the liquid. If you don’t want to use Fat-Free Half and Half, substitute whole or 2% milk.
- 12 ounces frozen chopped spinach
- 3 Tablespoons olive oil
- 1/4 cup all-purpose flour
- 1 1/2 teaspoons salt
- 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
- 1 cup Fat-Free Half and Half
- 1 cup 2% milk
- 2 Tablespoons lemon juice
Turn on oven to 350 degrees.
In a microwave-safe container, microwave frozen spinach for 5 minutes. Drain away liquid, then squeeze or press out as much liquid as possible. Set spinach aside. Heat olive oil in medium saucepan. Add flour, salt and pepper and cook roux until it begins to brown. Whisk in Fat-Free Half and Half and milk and cook on medium-high heat, whisking often, until sauce thickens. Remove from heat and stir in lemon juice and drained spinach. Mix well. Turn mixture into a greased casserole dish or deep dish pie plate, and bake for 20 minutes.
Makes 6 servings, each about 1/2 cup.
Nutritional information (per serving): 145 calories, 8 grams fat, 1.5 grams saturated fat, 3 grams protein, 15 grams carbohydrate, 4 grams sugars, 1 gram fiber, 5 milligrams cholesterol, 751 milligrams sodium
Cost per serving: 60 cents
Preparation time: 35 minutes
What happens next?
I am glad to eat creamed spinach as a leftover for several days, especially when I have a nice piece of fish or meat to go with it. Although my family likes Creamed Spinach well enough, no one but me will eat it again in that form. I usually save 2 servings for a quiche, to be made at some later time.
Creamed Spinach can be frozen, although the creamy sauce may separate a bit when it is thawed and reheated. No worries, though – all will be well after a brisk stir.
Another day’s delicious dish – Spinach and Ham Quiche
Trust me, real men do eat quiche – but only if it is good quiche! This recipe is a favorite at my house. The crust is easy to put together, and since there is only one crust in a quiche, it is quick to roll out. If your leftover Creamed Spinach was frozen, thaw it before using.
Be sure to get the sharpest white cheddar you can find – sharper cheese has more flavor, and so you can use less and still have a cheesy bite to your quiche. You may want to put in more Tabasco sauce if you like your quiche to have a kick.
If you want to add onions or mushrooms to this quiche, you will need to sauté them – don’t put raw vegetables into this dish because it will turn runny. This quiche is a great leftover itself; just a few minutes in the microwave and you are ready to eat.
If you don’t have leftover Creamed Spinach on hand, you can cook up 1 1/4 cups frozen spinach, squeeze out the liquid, then stir in 1/2 teaspoon salt, a healthy dash of black pepper, a teaspoon of lemon juice, and 1/4 cup heavy cream, and you will be ready to go.
Spinach and Ham Quiche
- 1 cup all-purpose flour
- 2 Tablespoons cornstarch
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 3 Tablespoons olive oil
- 3 Tablespoons 2% milk
- 1 teaspoon water
- 2 servings Creamed Spinach (about 1 cup)
- 4 eggs
- 3/4 cup 2% milk
- 1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
- 1/2 teaspoon ground mustard
- 2 dashes Tabasco sauce
- 4 ounces extra sharp white cheddar cheese, shredded (about 1 cup, packed)
- 4 ounces ham, diced (about 3/4 cup)
Turn on oven to 375 degrees.
To make crust, mix flour, cornstarch, and salt with a fork. Stir together oil, milk, and water, then add to flour mixture and stir until completely mixed. Gather dough into a ball, and then press into a circular disk. Place between 2 sheets of waxed paper and roll out dough very thin. Remove waxed paper, and fit crust into a deep dish pie plate. Finish crust with a fluted edge.
To make filling, warm Creamed Spinach by microwaving 1 minute. Beat together eggs, milk, pepper, ground mustard, and Tabasco. Stir in Creamed Spinach, shredded cheese, and ham. When completely combined, pour into crust and bake for 40 minutes. Let stand 10 minutes before serving.
Makes 4 servings.
Nutritional information (per serving): 551 calories, 31 grams fat, 11 grams saturated fat, 26 grams protein, 42 grams carbohydrate, 5 grams sugars, 1 gram fiber, 242 milligrams cholesterol, 1423 milligrams sodium
Cost per serving: $1.80
Preparation time: 1 hour and 15 minutes