Sunday, September 28, 2008

Spinach Makes the Heart Grow Fonder

I love spinach. Always have. For all those haters out there, you are truly missing out on what spinach can do. I like it as a salad (with bacon), stuffed into various things, and it makes a heck of a side dish (with garlic). I could go on and on about spinach, its nutritional value, and many other reasons why this vegetable should be high on your list, but instead I am going to share a recipe with you. Recently at my local supermarket I found spinach on eye-boggling sale. Being the bargain diver that I am, I bought a lot of it. More than would just do for side dishes. So I set about trying to make something new that would have multiple uses. I turned to pesto. I have had made spinach pesto numerous times with varying degrees of success, so this time I wanted something a bit different. What if I used something other than oil for my base? Sour cream was out, too runny. What about cream cheese? Perfect. So into the blender went cream cheese and a lot of spinach (dried thoroughly). It tasted like, well, cream cheese and spinach (surprise). So with a little tinkering, I adjusted it to my liking and the strengths of the spinach. Garlic, lemon, and thyme compliment the sauce while just a little bit of olive oil helps give it body. I served this two ways, over pasta as well as in a quesadilla. Both turned out remarkably well. So the next time I see spinach on sale, I know exactly what I am doing.

Sorry there are no pictures attached with this, I made the sauce before I got the good idea of using a camera.

Spinach Cream Cheese Pesto

4 ounces cream cheese
1 large bunch spinach, about 8 ounces
2 garlic cloves
1 T olive oil
2 t fresh time (or 1 t dried)
1 oz parmesan cheese (approximate)
1 t lemon zest

Add cream cheese and half of the spinach to food processor. Pulse until mostly smooth, add the remaining spinach and repeat. Add the rest of the ingredients and pulse until at a desired consistency, adjust for taste with salt, pepper, and lemon zest. Keeps up to 1 week in the refrigerator (it did not last long enough for me to freeze).


Sal September 29, 2008 at 2:54 PM  

In Syria, we have spinach as a main course. The dish is basically a spinach stew with ground meat, eaten with rice. Delicious.

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