Classic Creamed Spinach – comfort without the cream!
Finally I post again. I have quite a backlog of posts but I had to get this up right away – it is a great way to enjoy spinach, even if you don’t like it very much. And, for those of us who do like spinach, this recipe compliments, rather than masks the flavor.
I was looking for a creamed spinach recipe to go along with my favorite Garlic Roasted Chicken Leg Quarters. I had some sweet potatoes I needed to use up and wanted some greens for contrast, but also wanted a more “comfort food” texture than steamed veggies.
As I perused the Internet, I found many recipes that looked very tasty, with heavy cream and nutmeg often featured. But, I didn’t want use cream so as to save a few calories. And, I’ll go for shallots over onions almost any time.
Finally, I found the following recipe for creamed spinach, courtesy of sgrishka via Bigoven.
2 pounds fresh spinach, washed
2 tablespoons unsalted butter
2 shallots, minced
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 tablespoon all-purpose flour
3/4 cup whole milk, warmed
2 tablespoons Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese, freshly grated (optional)
1/4 teaspoon nutmeg, freshly grated
Pinch of cayenne pepper
Fresh ground black pepper, to taste
Coarse salt, to taste
Remove tough stems of spinach. Bring a large pot of salted water to boil. Add the spinach and cook for 2 minutes. Transfer to a colander and drain. Using the back of a large spoon, press spinach to release as much water as possible, then chop coarsely.
Using a medium sauté pan over medium heat, heat the butter. Sauté shallots until softened, about 4 minutes. Add garlic and cook until fragrant, about 1 minute. Using a wooden spoon, add the flour and cook, stirring, 3 minutes. Slowly add warm milk and simmer, whisking, 3 to 4 minutes to thicken. Whisk in cheese (if using) and nutmeg, season with salt and pepper. Add spinach and cook, stirring, until heated through, about 2 minutes.