Classic Creamed Spinach

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If I didn’t need to watch my waistline, I would eat creamed spinach every night. It is SO GOOD! 🙂 Sometimes the recipe is over the top. This version seems to offer just the right amount of decadence. We ate it with Baked Mustard Chicken as part of my husband’s birthday dinner. This recipe was adapted from Food and Wine, contributed by David Walzog of Michael Jordan’s The Steak House N.Y.C.. Wonderful!

  • 2 1/2 to 3 pounds fresh spinach, large stems discarded
  • 1 tablespoon plus 1 teaspoon avocado or extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 large shallot, minced
  • 1 cup heavy cream
  • 3 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 1/4 cup freshly grated Parmesan-Reggiano cheese
  • 1/4 cup water
  • coarse salt and freshly ground black pepper
  1. Heat 1 tablespoon of oil in a large saucepan. Add the spinach by the handful and cook over moderately high heat, stirring often, until wilted, about 5 minutes.
  2. Transfer the spinach to a colander and squeeze it as dry as possible. Chop the spinach.
  3. Heat the remaining 1 teaspoon of oil in the saucepan. Add the shallot and cook over moderate heat, stirring, until golden, 4 to 5 minutes.
  4. Add the cream; cook until reduced by half, 6 to 7 minutes.
  5. Add the butter and swirl to incorporate.
  6. Stir in the Parmesan and cook over low heat for 2 minutes.
  7. Add the spinach and water, season with salt and pepper and cook over low heat until the spinach is coated with the thickened sauce, about 5 minutes. Serve hot.

Make Ahead: The creamed spinach can be refrigerated overnight; rewarm over moderately low heat.

One Year Ago:

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Rick Bayless’ Classic Mexican Fried Beans with Onions & Garlic

Refried beans are an essential side dish to every Mexican meal. I am a fan of Trader Joe’s Vegetarian Salsa Style Refried Pinto Beans- I am not sure if I should be embarrassed to admit it. 🙂 They are smooth-textured and tasty.

This dish, Frijoles Refritos, is very different- and delicious as well! The beans are coarsely mashed and thick-textured. I used pinto beans (my preference) but any type of bean could be used and each would have a unique flavor. I also used avocado oil, but I am sure that they would be even tastier with bacon drippings!

This recipe is from Rick Bayless’s Mexican Kitchen: Capturing the Vibrant Flavors of a World-Class Cuisine. We ate them with Tacos of Creamy Braised Chard, Potatoes, & Poblanos. It would be pretty easy to just eat them as a dip with tortilla chips too.

Yield: Makes about 3 1/2 cups, 6 generous servings

  • 2 T vegetable oil, rich-tasting lard, bacon or chorizo drippings
  • 1 medium white onion, chopped
  • 4 garlic cloves, peeled and thinly sliced or finely chopped
  • 4 cups undrained, seasoned cooked beans, preferably slightly warm for easy mashing (I empty the canned beans into a measuring cup and microwave them, in their liquid, for 2 minutes.)
  • coarse salt, to taste
  • about 1/2 cup (2 ounces) crumbled queso fresco, or pressed, salted farmer’s cheese, dry feta or Parmesan, for garnish
  • cilantro, for garnish, optional
  • tortilla chips for garnish, optional
  1. In a large (10- to 12-inch), well-seasoned or nonstick skillet, heat the oil or pork fat over medium heat.
  2. Add the onion and cook, stirring frequently, until deep golden, about 10 minutes. Stir in the garlic, cook for a minute or so.
  3. Use a slotted spoon to scoop in about 1/4 of the warm beans, leaving most of the liquid behind. With a potato masher or the back of a large spoon, mash the beans into a coarse puree. Add another portion of the beans, mash them in, and continue until all of the beans have been added and coarsely mashed.
  4. Add about a cup of the bean liquid (or water if you have no liquid) and stir frequently over the heat until the beans are still a little soupier than you’d like to serve them (they’ll thicken as they sit). They should have the consistency of warm mashed potatoes. The total cooking time will take 10 to 15 minutes. IMG_7474
  5. Taste and season with salt, if necessary.
  6. Serve sprinkled with crumbled cheese, cilantro, and tortilla chips, as desired.

Notes:

  • It is easier to mash warm beans than cold ones. (I microwaved the beans to warm them before adding to the pan.)
  • Cook the beans softer than you want them because the dish thickens as it cools.
  • If the dish is made in advance, keep the beans warm in a double boiler rather than over direct heat. Check consistency and stir in a little water, if necessary, before serving.

One Year Ago:

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