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Frozen Spinach -- what to do with it?

v
valerie Aug 13, 2007 12:55 PM

As I've mentioned before on this board, I am very lucky in that I have 2 small chowhounds (ages almost 3 years old and almost 11 months old). They eat everything!

When my husband was out the other night, I was feeding them dinner, which consisted of turkey meatballs and little spanakopita that I buy at Trader Joe's. I keep the spanakopita in the freezer, just to mix things up once in a while. My son, almost 11 months old, couldn't really eat the flaky pastry part (too flaky) but I was giving him the spinach/feta filling on a fork and he loved it.

So it got me thinking about how I could prepare frozen spinach in order to make it tasty, without adding a lot of fat. The only thing that I could come up with was to make a spinach/cheese bake kind of thing, so I bought low-fat cottage cheese the next day. The recipe that I have includes, frozen spinach, cottage cheese, eggs, bread crumbs (actually it really calls for matzoh meal, since it's a Passover recipe!) and some spices. It's very easy and good, but I was wondering if anyone else has any suggestions for a tasty, easy spinach dish?

Thanks!

  1. b
    bear Aug 14, 2007 11:33 AM

    Easy spinach casserole:

    Sautee an onion in a couple of tablespoons of olive oil. Add a couple of cloves of chopped garlic and sautee until garlic is fragrant. Add 1/2 teas. each dried basil and oregano, optional pinch red pepper flakes, and lg. can tomatoes, either diced or whole, which need to be crushed. Simmer for about 30 min., until sauce is slightly thickened. Add salt and pepper to taste. Add 10 oz. package defrosted chopped spinach and stir. Meanwhile, cook about 3/4 lb. of your favorite short pasta in salted water until very slightly underdone. Mix pasta and sauce together, and mix in most of an 8 oz. bag of shredded mozzarella, reserving rest for top. Place pasta mix in a casserole, cover with reserved cheese, add parmesan and/or romano to the cheese on top, and bake cheese is lightly browned.

    1. a
      adams_jo Aug 14, 2007 11:18 AM

      Steam, puree, and combine with bechamel and serve with pasta.

      1. j
        jzerocsk Aug 14, 2007 08:44 AM

        Rachael Ray's Spanakopita burgers come up fairly often in our family rotation. It's basically patties made of meat, feta and thawed spinach. We usually make them with chicken or turkey instead of beef.

        1 Reply
        1. re: jzerocsk
          v
          valerie Aug 14, 2007 11:41 AM

          I just googled the recipe and I'll definitely will have to try these. I often make burgers from ground chicken with an asian flavoring, but these sound great for a change. Thanks!

        2. Candy Aug 13, 2007 07:16 PM

          Korean Chaochae works wonderfully with frozen choped spinach. Cold creamy spinach soup is also another option.

          1. 4
            4Snisl Aug 13, 2007 05:17 PM

            A healthy way to stretch ground meat (and add moistness to lean ground meats) is to add frozen spinach to a meat mixture used for meatballs, meatloaf, etc.

            1. v
              valerie Aug 13, 2007 05:06 PM

              Thanks for all of the suggestions. I should have mentioned that there are some limitations at this point, since my son is only 11 months old. He can't have eggs yet, so frittatas/quiches are out. Also, he can't eat nuts yet -- not so much for allergy reasons -- more because he only has 2 teeth!

              I will try some of the other suggestions, and file the rest away for the next few months when he can start eating eggs. Maybe this week I will make a baked ziti and mix the spinach in there...

              2 Replies
              1. re: valerie
                WCchopper Aug 14, 2007 11:14 AM

                Are babies not supposed to have eggs?

                1. re: WCchopper
                  v
                  valerie Aug 14, 2007 11:37 AM

                  Not really before around 12 months as it could lead to egg allergies. Not the yolks, but the whites.

                  Honestly, I don't really get it, since babies eat foods with eggs as part of the ingredients all the time, but I guess why chance it by giving them actual straight eggs -- scrambled, frittatas, etc.

              2. paulj Aug 13, 2007 02:47 PM

                I use the frozen chopped spinach from Traders in a number of ways:
                - cook just enough to thaw, squeeze dry, and season with soy sauce, salt, sugar, vinegar, sesame seeds to make a Japanese style salad
                - creamed spinach
                - Spanish style with nuts and raisins
                - Spanish style with chick peas
                - cook some with rice to color

                paulj

                1. g
                  gourmanda Aug 13, 2007 02:24 PM

                  Works great for quiche. 1 package thawed and water squeezed out. Saute w/ a little chopped shallot, add S&P and nutmeg. Put into (unbaked) pie crust, top with mix of 3 large eggs and enough milk (skim is fine) to make 1 1/2 cups. Top this w/ a little grated Swiss cheese and more nutmeg. Bake at 375 for 35 mins.

                  1. t
                    tk467 Aug 13, 2007 01:23 PM

                    Mix with low fat cream cheese and diced up onion. Buy some Frito scoops and you have a great dip

                    1. r
                      rexsreine Aug 13, 2007 01:15 PM

                      Easy and not much fat: saute a few cloves chopped garlic in a little olive oil. Add the frozen spinach, cover, and steam till tender. Add seasoned salt and pepper to taste. My Italian mother did this all the time as a quick vegetable dish and so do I.

                      1 Reply
                      1. re: rexsreine
                        m
                        mojoeater Aug 13, 2007 05:18 PM

                        Toss the above with pasta or pierogies too!

                      2. j
                        j2brady Aug 13, 2007 01:01 PM

                        A million things!

                        Ravioli filling
                        mixed into pasta
                        fritata
                        risotto
                        baked eggs with spinach and tomato sauce
                        eggs florentine
                        omletes
                        Caldo Verde (spinach and chick pea soup)
                        creamed
                        lasagna
                        egplant involtini filling
                        between baked fish fillets for a fish florentine dish
                        mannicotti/caneloni filling
                        cream of spinach soup
                        tossed into a bean salad
                        stirred into mac and cheese
                        pizza topping
                        curry
                        mixed into a chicken cacciatore dish

                        off the top of my head.....I love frozen spinach

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