Tag Archives: fresh spinach

April’s Eggs Florentine

“Florentine” seems to be the vague describer of anything with spinach.  I never knew that spinach and Florence were that closely connected but that seems to be the case.  Is it the birth place of spinach?  Or just the first place they thought to put eggs and spinach together?  Who knows? All I know is that it’s a pretty yummy combo.

If you look up recipes for Eggs Florentine you will find a pretty wide variety.  Everybody has their own little spin. But usually, it’s some sort of riff off Eggs Benedict.  There is some sort of bread, spinach, poached eggs, and some sort of sauce – sometimes it’s hollandaise, some times Mornay, or something else.

I usually make this just for me, so cooking up a fancy sauce for one isn’t always practical. Instead, I usually mix together a quickie sauce that in actuality is closer to a salad dressing.  It’s a little lighter, and definitely quicker.  And if you don’t want to mess with it, honestly sometimes I just skip it altogether.

April's Eggs Florentine

April’s Eggs Florentine

April’s Eggs Florentine

1-2 pieces of sourdough bread (usually the sourdough I buy is giant so I just cut one piece in half)
1/2 tsp. vinegar (any kind)
2 eggs
1/2 cup baby spinach
1 tsp. mayonnaise
1/2 tsp. dijon mustard
Dash of dill
Dash of cayenne
1 tsp. lemon juice

In a small skillet, add a pinch of salt and vinegar to about an inch of water.  Bring to a boil.  Break eggs into the water and turn down to medium.  Cover. Stick the bread in the toaster.  When the toast pops up, the eggs should be done.  Scatter fresh spinach on top of toast and, using a slotted spoon or spatula, lift eggs, let water drain off, and place onto spinach.  In a small bowl mix mayo, dijon, dill, cayenne and lemon juice.  Drizzle over the top of eggs and serve.

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Spinach Salad with Spring Onion Vinaigrette

A fruitful (ha) trip to farmers market resulted in a whole counter full of veggies and me wondering how the heck I was going to eat them all before they went bad.  And more importantly, where the heck to put them all in the meantime.  I got a good start on solving both problems by throwing together this wonderful  main dish salad for dinner.

This time of year I’m always happy to find spring onions at the market.  I never see them at the store for some reason.  But I love them.

Spring onions.  Like scallions on steroids.  You can eat both the green and white parts.

Spring onions. Like scallions on steroids. You can eat both the green and white parts.

If you can’t find spring onions, feel free to sub red onion or scallions instead.  For the potatoes, I found tiny pebble sized potatoes but you can use bigger new potatoes if you can’t find the tiny ones.  Just half or quarter them to make bite sized pieces.

Spinach Salad with Spring Onion Vinaigrette

Spinach Salad with Spring Onion Vinaigrette

Spinach Salad with Spring Onion Vinaigrette

6-8 cups fresh spinach leaves, big stems removed
1 cup grape tomatoes, halved
1-2 cups baby potatoes (the smallest ones you can find, cut in half if needed to make bite size)
3 tbsp. olive oil
3-4 spring onions, divided into white and green parts
1 cup purple cabbage, thinly sliced
1 tsp. raw sugar
1 tsp. coarse dijon mustard
3-4 tsp. red wine vinegar
Salt & pepper

In a small saucepan, cover potatoes in water and bring to a boil.  Boil 8-10 minutes until fork tender but not mushy.  Drain and set aside.

Wash spinach and pat dry, remove any large tough stems.  Put in a big serving bowl.

Yummy fresh spinach from farmer's market.

Yummy fresh spinach from farmer’s market.

In a small bowl whisk together sugar, dijon and vinegar.  Add a pinch of salt & pepper.  In a skillet, heat olive oil over medium heat.  Add white parts of onions and sauté 1-2 minutes.  Add cabbage and green parts on onions and sauté another minute.

A quick sauté on the veggies to soften just a bit and bring out the flavor.

A quick sauté on the veggies to soften just a bit and bring out the flavor.

Add vinegar mixture and potatoes to skillet and toss to combine.  Cook and stir gently 30 seconds or so to heat through and let the vinaigrette permeate all the veggies.  Pour over the spinach and add tomatoes.  Toss everything together.  Serve warm.  Makes 4 main dish servings or 6-8 side servings.

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Hearty Spinach Salad

I grew up thinking spinach was disgusting.  And it was.  Because the spinach of my youth looked a lot like this:

Canned Spinach. Blech!

Nothing can make that look or taste appetizing to me.  And don’t even get me started on the nasty smell.  All of the Popeye cartoons in the world would still not make me want to eat it. Canned spinach is the reason kids hate vegetables.

Luckily, as often happens, in my food journey somewhere along the line I discovered that spinach actually comes from a plant, not a can.  And the fresh stuff is pretty darn good!  In fact, it’s one of my favorite ingredients, and not just for salad.  You can chop up fresh spinach and put it in just about anything, from casseroles and omelets to meatloaf.

I haven’t eaten bacon since before we started Project Veggie.  You could make this without it (just saute the onions in a little butter or olive oil instead).  But I didn’t do that.  I miss bacon sometimes.  And combined with the spinach and apple juice and all the other good stuff in here, it was REALLY good. The potatoes, bacon and eggs also give this salad some nice substance, making it perfect for a main dish.

Hearty Spinach Salad. Much better!

Hearty Spinach Salad

1 – 10 oz. package fresh baby spinach
4-6 small red potatoes, cooked and diced
3 hard-boiled eggs, chopped
1/2 cup sliced fresh mushrooms
2-4 bacon strips
1/4 cup red onion, chopped
1/2 tsp. cornstarch
1/4 cup apple juice
2 tbsp. cider vinegar
2 tsp. sugar
1/8 tsp. pepper

Combine spinach, potatoes, eggs, and mushrooms in large salad bowl.  Cook bacon and remove to drain on paper towels.  Cook onion in bacon drippings until tender.  Combine cornstarch, apple juice, vinegar, sugar and pepper.  Stir into skillet with onions.  Bring to a boil.  Cook and stir 1-2 minutes until slightly thickened and bubbly.  Pour over spinach mixture.  Crumble bacon on top and toss to combine.

Served with french bread on the side. Make sure you dig down and get all the good stuff from the bottom of the bowl!

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