Thursday, August 1, 2013

Tales of the Culinary-Challenged: My Favorite Spinach Recipes

A lot of people assumed I started learning how to cook only when I got married, but unbeknownst to many, I've been trying for years since I've been living with my parents until I became independent and lived alone. Cooking just really doesn't come naturally to me, that's all, which is weird because I come from a family of people who cook. However, I am pretty surprised that I haven't had many cooking mishaps. Maybe that's where the family cooking genes come in.

Now I am trying to learn my parents' recipes. I miss their home-cooking and I would like to be able to eat those dishes with my husband. Before I got married though, I learned a few recipes in an effort to be healthy. [Check out Cooking Edamame and Breakfast Oatmeal with a Twist!] I thought I would share a couple of my favorite, very easy, very basic spinach recipes. I must say I'm not a big vegetable person, but spinach was a veggie I naturally gravitated towards. Maybe it was all those Popeye cartoons that I watched when I was a kid, heh, but I think mostly it was because I was having lettuce/salad fatigue at the supermarket that day I decided on spinach. Plus, I was always cooking broccoli and cauliflower already, and I wanted something new. I'm rambling as usual, so here you go. I usually cook these recipes when I'm on a diet. I eat these for dinner without anything else, but on days when I have diet fatigue they make great side dishes.

Garlic Spinach

You need a few cloves of garlic of course, a bunch of spinach (I usually use half a bag for just me but for regular non-dieting appetites one bag should do it), and extra virgin olive oil, which is important because it tempers the spinach's natural bitterness.

Wash the spinach thoroughly and make sure that you do it right before cooking. If you cook the spinach with the water still on the leaves, it also helps in minimizing the bitterness.

Chop the garlic into tiny pieces and then sautee until brown.

Throw in the spinach, toss it in the extra virgin olive oil and garlic in medium heat.

Wait until it all reduces down. Spinach is kind of tricky in the sense that the leaves get super small when it cooks. Add salt and pepper to taste during this stage.

That's it! I do think spinach is a love it or hate it kind of veggie. For me it was definitely an acquired taste.

Spinach Scrambled Eggs

I usually cook this when I need more protein in my belly, or when I'm just tired of veggies (again, not a big veggie person). You need two eggs on top of the other ingredients I mentioned above.

Remember: wash, and cook immediately with water still on the leaves!

Beat the eggs and have them on the ready.

Roughly chop up the spinach and mix with the eggs.

Heat a pan up to medium, drizzle extra virgin olive oil, then heat again.

Bring the heat down to low and pour the mixture in. Then stir slowly to scramble the eggs. Add salt and pepper to taste.

There you go! This is great with toast.

"I'm strong to the finicch, 'cause I eat me spinach..." Now I'm LSS-ing.

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