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Your favorite thing to do with frozen spinach?

I swear--the frozen box of spinach has got to be one of the best baragains in any grocery: cheap, healthy, economical and can go in a million dishes.

What do you make with your frozen spinach?

My favorite is bisque and quiche.

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  1. I'm sure if you search, you'll come up with a gazillion recs (goodhealthgourmet, where are you when you are needed??).

    But, anyhow, my most recent use for frozen spinach is to make ice cream with it.

    5 Replies
    1. re: ipsedixit

      http://chocolatecoveredkatie.com/2011...
      If you've never tried spinach ice cream, it's unique in taste & texture.

      1. re: HillJ

        Spinach ice cream is actually quite addictive. It's sort of like cold creamed spinach. At least the way I make it.

        That linked recipe for "Mint Chocolate Chip" ice cream using spinach looks intriguing but seems to waste the whole point of using spinach in ice cream. It is much more than just a food coloring ...

        1. re: ipsedixit

          ips, could you post your version/recipe for spinach ice cream so we could see how you utilize the full flavor of spinach.

          1. re: HillJ

            Sure.

            Recipe below.

            ____________________________________

            1.5 cups whole milk

            1 cup of spinach juice (from frozen spinach that’s run through a blender and strained)

            Reserve the strained spinach leaves

            A pinch or two of salt

            1 cup sugar

            1 vanilla bean

            2.5 cups heavy cream

            6 large egg yolks

            1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

            Heat and combine the whole milk, salt, and sugar in a saucepan. Then incorporate the vanilla bean seeds into the milk, as well as the pod (optional). Stirring gently, then add the spinach juice. Stir to incorporate. Cover and remove from heat, and let it rest for 1-2 hours. Remove the pod.

            Whisk the egg yolks and then incorporate your spinach-vanilla milk – slowly and gradually – into the yolks. Warm gradually and stir until you make a nice thick custard. Thick enough that it coats your spatula like cold molasses.

            Then strain the custard into the heavy cream, incorporate the reserved spinach leaves and vanilla extract, and stir over a bowl of ice until the mixture is cool (not cold, but cool).

            Add to your ice cream maker and follow directions and voila, after a night in the freezer you should have “Creamed Spinach” Ice Cream.

      2. Frankly, except for salads, I use frozen spinach for pretty much any & every recipe that calls for spinach. The quality is excellent, it's easy to portion/measure, & it cuts out a few steps.

        I use it as a bed for Chicken Francese, tossed with feta cheese as a bed for Greek-style shrimp, as a nest for poached eggs coated with a silken cheese sauce - you name it. If a recipe calls for cooked spinach, I reach for the frozen.

        1. I made a spinach, artichoke and blue cheese quiche this weekend with frozen spinach. It was delicious.

          1. I like to add some to vegetable curry. I may have to try using it for a poached egg, too. That sounds like a good combination!

            1. I've been using the food processor to mix a box of cooked spinach with ricotta cheese. I then bake it as a casserole, topped with salted sunflower seeds. I still haven't got quite the taste I want, but I'm getting closer.

              4 Replies
              1. re: sueatmo

                Have you tried a little ground nutmeg in it? Or isn't that the direction you're going?

                1. re: sueatmo

                  nemo gave you a great suggestion - a pinch of freshly grated nutmeg always gives spinach that little something extra. you can also amp up the flavor with sauteed garlic and onion, and maybe a bit of flavorful cheese like good Parm or Pecorino. not sure if you've seen cheesecake17's "spinach jibin" - it's her take on the crustless spinach quiche/casserole, and popular with many fellow CHers:
                  http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/5833...

                    1. re: eclecticsynergy

                      Hey thanks guys! Yes, I add ground nutmeg. For me the flavor is too sweet. I just had a brainstorm today as i was preparing spaghetti squash for baking with some grated cheese and other stuff. I should add some sour cottage cheese. It is the wonderful ricotta that I get at WF that makes the dish so sweet. (It isn't really sugary sweet, more of a bland sweet.) I think the sourness of the cottage cheese added to the ricotta might help the flavor. My great discovery is the use of salted sunflower seeds as a topping.

                  1. I agree, frozen spinach is such a helpful pantry staple. I love frozen (drained of all water of course) spinach on homemade pizza along with onions, mushrooms, ricotta cheese and basil.

                    Crepes, baked egg nests, puff pastry, stuffed in chicken or pork, as a dip, in fresh pasta dough, in soup, in souffle, smeared on texas toast and as creamed spinach.

                    1. I make all kinds of things with it. Most recently I put it into a lasagne with pancetta, ground beef, and ricotta. Recipe at Epicurious: http://www.epicurious.com/recipes/foo...

                      It's also great in Giada de Laurentiis' Shells with Crispy Pancetta and Spinach: http://www.cookingchanneltv.com/recip...

                      Can you tell my kids like pasta?

                      1. Curried rice with spinach and chickpeas, the fact that it's a "chuck it all in the rice cooker and walk away" meal doesn't hurt, but it's really tasty as well!

                        http://recipes.sparkpeople.com/recipe...

                        1. Braciole.

                          I pound thin with a meat mallet either chix, beef or pork cutlets, then saute in a hot pan the thawed spinach, olive oil, sliced garlic, red pepper flakes, pine nuts, white wine or marsala, yellow raisins/currants and , bread crumbs.

                          Once heated and cooked thru to a paste, stuff and roll each piece of meat, then hold toghether with a toothpick. Brown and then do finish cooking with your favorite italian red sauce or marinara on teh stove in a covered sauce pan.

                          Serve over pasta of choice.

                          I also do several spinach dips, both hot and cold as well as use it for oysters rockafeller and , in a pinch use it to make "beans and greens" which is canolini beans, garlic , spinach, chili flakes, chix broth and several other ingredients.

                          1. meatballs from skinnytaste.com

                            1. Joe's Special - a San Francisco favorite and one of my favorites when I'm tired and we need a comfort supper.

                                1. I love to put it outside and watch the racoons and skunks run away from it. :P

                                  1 Reply
                                  1. I throw it into a lot of soups and stews.
                                    Also, after several disastrous attempts at making palak paneer, I realized my recipe worked much better with frozen, rather than fresh, spinach -- so I use it for that!

                                    1. Spanikopita!

                                      Frozen is the best, because you can thaw it and then squeeze out the excess liquid before working with it.

                                      I also love being able to throw it into omelets with cheese. So easy! Or mix it into mashed potatoes, with nutmeg and garlic. Easily elegant.

                                      1. these are all such great ideas - i've been a sucker all this time! when my mom was sick i threw fresh spinach into everything but it would have been just as easy and cheaper to use frozen. good to know.

                                        1 Reply
                                        1. re: mariacarmen

                                          easy & cheap, yes, but not always as good. i'm not crazy about frozen spinach - it's fine if you're spicing it up with other things or baking it into something, but it can have a strange texture, and IMO the flavor is pretty insipid.

                                        2. I just made this last Friday, and even my lo-cal hating DH loved it:

                                          http://www.skinnytaste.com/2011/04/ch...

                                          1. My mom makes spinach balls -- basically thawed and squeezed frozen spinach, egg, grated fontina and parmesan cheese and a bit of flour, coated in flour and panfried until crispy. You could probably bake them instead to make the recipe simpler. Anyway, they're delicious, and the spinach really stands out (unless you add crazy amounts of cheese).

                                            2 Replies
                                            1. re: piccola

                                              OMG. My Mom makes the same thing as an appetizer, only she puts in stuffing, rolls into balls, freezes on cookie sheets, then bakes in a hot oven. Yummy.

                                              1. re: natewrites

                                                Yeah, these end up being almost pure spinach, but the concept is the same. Good to know they come out well in the oven!

                                              1. SPinach Madeline..see River Road Cookbook. the original Kraft jalepeno Cheese is not made anymore but the Junior League of Baton Rouge has some sort of fix-it..I hear it is on the website but I just wing-it myself. Great use for frozen spinach.

                                                1 Reply
                                                1. re: hazelhurst

                                                  spinach madeline was such a fun find! I've made it a few times to great raves! But I use it as a dip.

                                                2. Palak paneer, an Indian dish with spinach (not finely chopped) and paneer cheese in a curry sauce. SO GOOD! Need to make some soon.

                                                  1. I have been on Weight Watchers and I go through a lot of frozen spinach. Tonight I made angel hair pasta with chicken sausage. I put a mound of spinach on my plate, then a small portion of pasta and only a very small amount of chicken sausage. I add some mushrooms and carrots (I always keep frozen carrots on hand too), and some parmesan cheese. With all the vegetables on the plate, it helps me eat much less pasta and the spinach is so filling.

                                                    Of course, I like Ina's spinach gratin too, but that's why I need to be on WW!

                                                    1. My most favoritest spanakopita (uses 3 boxes frozen):
                                                      http://erincooks.com/amy-sedariss-spa...

                                                      1. I use frozen leaf spinach only, not chopped, truly a advantageous product. I'm a big fan of creamed spinach, and spinach gnocchi, spinach and fontina calzones, spinach, prosciutto and sausage cannelloni, any hearty bean, vegetable, pasta, chicken or lentil soup and that ridiculously agreeable hot spinach-artichoke dip. I sub it for parsley in tabbouleh, with eggs any way, with seafood; frozen spinach has a multitude of uses, many mentioned here, even possibly the, um, spinach ice cream.

                                                        Here's an old thread with a variation of Joe's Special:

                                                        http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/2783...

                                                        1. There is one tip I'd like to add about frozen spinach - & that is to always buy a brand name, as opposed to the supermarket brand.

                                                          While I frequently buy supermarket-brand frozen vegetables without any problems whatsoever, I've found supermarket-brand frozen spinach to be chock full of tough stems.

                                                          1 Reply
                                                          1. re: Breezychow

                                                            My experience as well, and why I also buy leaf as opposed to chopped, which tends to be full of chopped stems.

                                                          2. It's great in spanakopita. Defrost about a pound of phyllo (follow the directions on the box). Nuke your frozen spinach (you'll need two bags, about 1 lb). Squeeze it in a towel, then mix with a bunch of chopped scallions and a large handful of chopped dill. Now preheat your oven to 375. Lay a sheet of phyllo on a large cookie sheet, brush liberally with olive oil (you'll need about half a cup for the whole recipe.) Do this until half the sheets have been oiled. Spread the spinach mixture over this, satl and pepper liberally, then sprinkle no more than 6 oz crumbled feta (sheep feta is best) over this. Lay the remaining phyllo over this, brushing each with oil. When all or most of the sheets have been used (I always waste a few), score the pie into serving pieces, but don't cut all the way through. Bake until it's lightly gold, maybe 30 minutes. I just eyeball it.

                                                            This is a real spanakopita, which is all about the spinach, not a cheesy spinach pie.

                                                            1. I usually saute up some onions, some minced garlic, toss it into the frozen spinach, mix it with an egg, some bread crumbs, some nutmeg, form it into patties and fry them. I've also caramelized onions, added the spinach to the frying pan, and then mixed it with raisins and pine nuts.