I've been thinking about creamed spinach since Thanksgiving (sadly, there was none at the dinner we went to.) This is a dish that always reminds me of my mom, who loves it and often would make it for potluck Thanksgiving dinners when I was growing up.
I had never attempted it but when I saw this wonderful-looking recipe from Deb at Smitten Kitchen last month, I made a mental note to try it soon. Unfortunately, since my son was born in the spring, my mental notes are no longer very reliable so it's taken me a while to get around to it.
I can't really take any credit for this as it's a well-established fact that pretty much anything that includes heavy cream, butter, onions and garlic is bound to be delicious. But this creamed spinach really did have me reaching back into the bowl for seconds and then thirds and lovingly licking the wooden serving spoon after the meal.
It's creamy, sweet, fresh, and sinfully rich. Despite the fact that I just gave all the credit for how good this tastes to the heavy cream and the butter, I actually think that the spinach, itself, is what sets it above all other creamed spinach I've ever eaten.Although you can make this dish with frozen spinach, I strongly suggest that you use fresh, organic spinach, instead. It just tastes much better and the texture is better, too.
So next time you feel like eating comfort food or need to gain some weight in a hurry, give this a try. I don't think you'll be disappointed.
* 2 1/2 pounds fresh organic spinach, tough stems and yellow leaves discarded
* 1 3/4 cups heavy cream or whole milk, or a mix thereof
* 1 large onion, finely chopped
* 2 cloves garlic, minced
* 3 tablespoons unsalted butter
* 3 tablespoons all-purpose flour
* Pinch of freshly grated nutmeg
* Sea salt & freshly ground black pepper, to taste
1. Wash your spinach well but no need to spin or pat it dry. Place spinach in a large pot over high heat. Cook, covered, with just the water clinging to leaves, stirring occasionally, until wilted, about 4 to 6 minutes (baby spinach will take less time than regular spinach but I'd use the grown up version if I were you.)
2. Press or squeeze out the excess liquid any number of ways, either by putting it in a colander or mesh strainer and pressing the moisture out or letting it cool long enough to grab small handfuls and squeezing them to remove as much water as possible. Coarsely chop the wrung-out spinach. Wipe out large pot so you can use it again.
3. Heat milk or cream in a small saucepan over moderate heat, stirring, until warm. Keep warm. Meanwhile, cook onion and garlic, if using, in butter in your wiped-out large pot over moderately low heat, stirring occasionally, until softened, about six minutes. Whisk in flour and cook roux, whisking, about three minutes. Add warm milk or cream in a slow stream, whisking constantly to prevent lumps, and simmer, whisking, until thickened, three to four minutes. Stir in nutmeg, spinach, and salt and pepper to taste and cook, stirring, until heated through.
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