Tag Archives: Spinach

Paprika Chicken & Spinach With White Wine Butter Sauce

Paprika Chicken & Spinach With White Wine Butter Sauce

  • Servings: 2
  • Difficulty: easy
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Paprika Chicken & Spinach With White Wine Butter Sauce
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The other night I was poking around Pintrest looking for recipe ideas and saw this one published by Mary of wwww.thekitchenpaper.com that she titled Paprika Chicken & Spinach With White Wine Butter Thyme Sauce. This is the first recipe I have tried from her and it was pretty good. I liked the paprika crust it created on the chicken and the white wine sauce was a great way to pair the chicken and spinach. I served it with some brown rice which is optional. The paprika brings a smokey element that is brightened up by the wine.

Ingredients:
2 Free Range Air Chilled Chicken Breasts
4 tbs of butter
1 cup of white wine
2-3 handfuls of fresh spinach
4 cloves of garlic minced
1/4 cup of fresh thyme
1 tbs of Paprika
2 tsp Kosher Salt and Pepper

Directions:
1. Heat up a cast iron skillet to about medium. Pat your chicken breast dry and rub the paprika, salt and pepper all over the breast. Melt your butter and brown your chicken breasts on both sides. About 3-4 minutes on each side.

2. Now add the garlic and spinach and the wine and cook on a simmer for about 20 minutes. The sauce will reduce and thicken up a bit. Stir in your thyme and let it soften about 15mins into the simmer. Serve it up and enjoy.
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Spinach and Mushroom Goat Cheese Quiche

Spinach and Mushroom Goat Cheese Quiche

  • Servings: 4-6
  • Difficulty: easy
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Spinach and Mushroom Goat Cheese Quiche
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Tonight I made a quiche that was packed, possibly over packed, with spinach and mushrooms. Since we like goat cheese, I broke up large chunks and scattered them on the crust before pouring the egg mixture in. To get some color on the top I went with Parmesan cheese because I didn’t think it would compete with the goat cheese.

We enjoyed it for dinner but certainly great for breakfast or brunch. Also holds up well throughout the week. This savory quiche is packed with veggies all suspended in an omelet like egg pie with bursts of tangy goat cheese countered by the slightly sweet crust.

Ingredients:
Pie crust
Two handfuls of spinach
1/2 cup of chopped mushrooms
4 eggs
1 cup of milk
1/4 cup of Goat cheese
Parmesan Cheese to top

Directions:
1. Take your pie crust and use a fork to poke the crust so it won’t rise in the oven. You can also put beans or a pan on top of it to accomplish the same thing. Cook it according to the directions on the pie crust. Set aside and let it cool.

2. While the pie crust is baking, Take a saute pan and cook your spinach and mushrooms until they are tender. try to remove as must moisture as possible by squeezing it in a paper towel. Set this aside.

3. In a separate dish crack your eggs and milk and whisk it completely. To assemble your quiche break up the goat cheese and scatter it on the bottom. Next mix your spinach/mushrooms with the egg mixture and pour into the pie sheel. Mine was pretty packed. You may have extra. IMG_0903IMG_0904IMG_0901

4. Now protect your crust by wrapping foil around it so that it doesn’t over cook in the oven. Remember the pie crust is already cooked so you want to protect it. Top with Parmesan cheese to cover. Put in a 350 degree oven and cook for about 30-45 minutes. Just check it at the 30 minute mark and watch it until the eggs are solid and not giggly.
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Greenzilla Smoothie

Greenzilla Smoothie
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A couple of weeks ago I was in Canada for business and went to dinner with some guys. One of the guys was a health fanatic and we started talking about his routine and his food. He is a big runner and also a low calorie guy. Have you heard of these guys who try to keep it to 1200 calories a day. He isn’t that strict but will go low calorie a few days a week. We talked about dinner and he said he has a green smoothie several times a week. He said he craves them so I have been making and drinking them for breakfast for about a week. They are pretty delicious.

Here is how I make it….

1 avocado
1 green apple
1/2 cucumber
1 tbs of ginger
1/4 frozen pineapple
Two handfuls of spinach and kale mix
1 lime juiced
1/2 cup of Organic natural apple juice
a few cubes of ice

I take most of the skin off the apple and cucumber and rough chop them. I add everything in my Vitamix and start it slow and hit it hard for about 1-2 mins to break everything down as smooth as possible.

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Italian Sausage and Spinach Stuffed Shells

Italian Sausage and Spinach Stuffed Shells

  • Servings: 4-6
  • Difficulty: easy
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Italian Sausage and Spinach Stuffed Shells
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Tonight was pasta night and I was thinking stuffed shells. It eats like a less cheesy and rich lasagna. You can control your cheese, meat, spinach ratio. I have made this several times and don’t really have a recipe for it but rather make it up each time.

Italian sausage is good but sometimes a little over powering. I found a lighter version that was lighter on fat and spice. I wanted to bump up the spinach ratio while lowering the cheese mixture. Jill was held up at work so I had to cook it a little longer than I wanted. I used my biggest cast iron skillet to accommodate all the shells but by doing so I left some shells exposed. Just be careful because you will harden up the exposed noodle part. I like the chew it gives them but you may not.

Really delicious meal that lets the pasta, Italian sausage and spinach shine through with the sauce nicely tying it all together.

Ingredients
3/4 package of Jumbo pasta shells
1 package (1 lbs) of light Italian Sausage (casing removed)
1 jar of Tomato Sauce
Parsley
1 bag of spinach
4 cloves of garlic
handful of fresh cut basil
Parmesan Cheese
Mozzarella cheese
1 container of Ricotta
1 small onion

Directions:
1. Boil your pasta in salted water according to the directions on the box. Drain and rinse with cool water so you can handle them as you stuff them.

2. Make your stuffing. Brown your pork sausage and remove the rendered fat. Add your onion, spinach and two cloves of minced garlic. The spinach has a lot of water so when everything is soft and wilted, remove as much of it as you can. Pour into a bowl and let it cool. IMG_0028

3. When the meat spinach mixture is warm add 1/4 cup of Parmesan cheese and your ricotta cheese. Mix well and taste. Adjust seasoning accordingly. You shouldn’t need extra salt with the sausage and parm but taste it to make certain.

4. I used the same cast iron skillet after I removed the meat mixture. I added a jar of marinara sauce. To that sauce I added 2 cloves of minced garlic and tomato paste and crushed red peppers. Brought it to a simmer and then added my basil. I turned it to low while I stuffed my shells.

5. Stuff your shells and put them into the sauce face up. I liked to add a some mozzarella or parm on the top and finish them in an oven around 375 degrees until the cheese melts. Like I mentioned above mine when a little longer because Jill was running late. IMG_0025IMG_0026
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6. Serve in a bowl with some sauce added.
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Asparagus Spinach Feta Quiche

Asparagus Spinach Feta Quiche

  • Servings: 6-10
  • Difficulty: easy
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Asparagus Spinach Feta Quiche
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For Easter morning I wanted to make a quiche. I figured it would be a two meal day and the quiche would satisfy us for several hours. Also because I am making a ham I have several ham dishes lined up so I wanted to go more veggie with this quiche.

You can really use any veggies or fruits you like but just try to control the moisture content. Asparagus and Spinach were my choice. I also like using Feta or Goat cheese in my quiche. Feta holds up nicely where goat cheese will most likely melt more.

What happens is that the egg will sink to the bottom the veggies will be the middle layer and the Feta will rise to the top. So each bite will change unless you get all three layers. Some will be more salty, others more pie crusty, eggy, vegtabley. (not words, I know)

This recipe was adapted by Two Peas & Their Pod.
Ingredients:
Pie crust (used store bought 9″)
5 Eggs
1/2 cup of diced Asparagus
1/2-3/4 cup of spinach
5 green onions (diced)
3/4 cup of Feta cheese
1/4 cup of Mozzarella
1 cup of milk

Directions:
1. If you are using a store bought pie crust follow the instructions. You know prick with a fork and bake it for 12 minutes until golden brown. Set aside.
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2. In a skillet first cook your spinach alone. Let it wilt completely. Remove and put into a towel or paper towels. Squeeze out all the moisture you can. Now to that skillet add the white and light green parts of the green onion with asparagus and the cooked spinach. Dice that spinach before putting it back into the skillet.
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3. Whisk your eggs in a large bowl with the milk. Salt and Pepper (be careful because the feta is salty) Combine in the cheeses. IMG_9801

4. To assemble you take the baked pie crust and add the veggies along with the green onion parts now. Pour the egg, milk and cheese mixture atop the veggies. Place into a 375 degree oven uncovered. If you prefer non browned you can use foil the first 20 minutes and then remove. You want some of the moisture to dissipate.
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It will be puffy looking when you remove it from the oven. Let it rest for 10 minutes and it should settle.
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Spinach Mushroom Creamy Chicken Casserole

Spinach Mushroom Creamy Chicken Casserole

  • Servings: 6-8
  • Difficulty: easy
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Spinach Mushroom Creamy Chicken Casserole
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Lately I have been playing around with chicken recipes. If you have followed the last few weeks, I made shish tawook, chicken and rice and then that “yum” chicken recipe. So I had some left over rice pilaf from my shish tawook and also some extra chicken. I thought I would add some veggies and landed on spinach, mushroom and caramelized onions.

The chicken stays moist due to the sauce which is a creamy Parmesan cheese bechamel. The veggies add an earthiness on top of the savory sauce and finally the balsamic caramelized onions introduce a pop of sweetness. I added a touch of Slap ya Mama seasoning to my flour for a touch of heat.

Ingredients:
4 organic free range chicken breasts (sliced into larger than bite sized pieces)
2 onions (diced)
1 package of mushrooms (sliced)
3 cloves of garlic (minced)
2 bags of baby spinach (8 cups uncooked)
1/3 cup of heavy cream
1/4 cup of whole milk
1/2 cup of Parmesan cheese
1/4 cup seasoned flour (w/Slap Ya Mama)
1 tbs of balsamic vinegar
Olive Oil
Kosher salt and Pepper to taste

Directions:
1. I started by cooking my chicken. I trimmed the breasts and then cut them in to cutlet size. I dusted with some seasoned flour and then in a medium heated skillet I put a little crust on them. Once browned set them aside. I had some rice pilaf so put it into a baking dish and placed the chicken on top. IMG_9782

2. Start the veggies by dicing the onions and adding them to a medium heated pan with a some oil. Cook for about 10 minutes until they are browning and then add your tablespoon of balsamic vinegar. Into the pan goes the mushrooms and garlic. Cook for about 3-4 minutes. Now add your spinach. It looks like a lot but will wilt dramatically. Turn it on low heat. IMG_9788

3. In a smaller sauce pan add a small amount of flour and butter to make a small blond roux. Add the milk, cream and Parmesan cheese with a little pepper. See below (not a great picture) IMG_9786

4. Now add half the sauce to the cooked veggies and coat them well. The remaining sauce pour over the chicken and rice pilaf. Then add your saucy veggies. Top with a little more parm and put into a 375 degree oven. Everything is cooked so you are just going to let it all meld together and for the cheese to brown.
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Houston’s Spinach & Artichoke Dip (copycat)

Houston's Spinach & Artichoke Dip

  • Servings: 4-10
  • Difficulty: easy
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Houston’s Spinach & Artichoke Dip
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Given that I attempted to replicate Houston’s Club Sandwich, I thought I might go ahead and try their Spinach Artichoke dip too. They serve their dip with sides of sour cream and salsa along with a warm bowl of tortilla chips. When sharing with friends there is a always a little chip / dip panic to make sure you get your fair share. When it’s just the two of us, I can relax a little. To avoid all of that scarcity panic, I made two smaller bowls so each of us had our own bowl with ample chips.

The only thing I can think of that Houston’s does differently than any other S&A dip is the tortilla chips and the salsa. It’s such a tasty dip that is creamy and savory. The salsa adds a punch of acid and heat that works great together.

Lastly, The fact that you have spinach and artichokes in the title, also helps make you feel a little less guilty.

Ingredients:
2 boxes of frozen spinach
12 oz of jarred artichoke hearts (drained and chopped)
4 cloves of garlic
3 tbs of minced/grated onion (yellow or white)
2 tsp of lemon juice
2 tsp of Tabasco (optional)
1/4 cup of Cream
1/4 cup of butter
1/4 cup of AP flour
2 cups of sour cream
splash of chicken broth to loosen it up
1/2 cup of fresh grated Parmesan cheese
White Cheddar cheese (grated for the top)

Tortilla chips
Sour Cream
Salsa

Directions:
1. Start by making a simple roux. Melt your butter in a sauce pan on medium-low heat. Add your onion and garlic and cook until softened (5 minutes). Whisk in the flour and stir for about 1-2 minutes.

2. If your cream isn’t room temperature microwave it for 20 seconds until it’s tepid or even warm. Whisk it into the roux and stir until thickens and is boiling or simmering. Now stir in the lemon juice, chicken broth, Tabasco and Parmesan cheese until melted. Remove from heat and set it aside to cool for a few minutes.

3. Stir in the sour cream followed by folding in the artichokes and spinach. Taste it and salt and pepper accordingly. If you like it hotter amp up your Tabasco.

4. Pour into a oven safe ramekin and top it with the fresh grated white cheddar cheese. Put it in the middle rack of your oven on broil until the cheddar starts to brown. Be careful with your ramekin because it will be hot.
Serve along side bowls of sour cream and your favorite salsa. Use a sturdy tortilla chip for dipping.
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Sweet and Spicy Salmon with Baby Spinach

Sweet and Spicy Salmon with Baby Spinach

  • Servings: 1
  • Difficulty: easy
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Sweet and Spicy Salmon with Baby Spinach
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Jill had a fund raiser tonight so I was left home like a latch key husband. When I am running solo I try eat foods that are lower on Jill’s list. I picked up some beautiful frozen wild caught sockeye salmon filets from Whole Foods.
Really Salmon with a little Kosher salt and pepper is all you need but I wanted to flirt with a sweet and spicy rub. I found one online and altered it based upon what I had in my spice cabinet.

The rub is both sweet but has some heat behind it too. I dried my salmon really well and in hindsight I should have just patted it down so that the spices melted on the salmon with a little more moisture. I also picked up some wood planks to cook them on which infused a little of that woody flavor to the salmon. As I have said before, when cooking salmon you need to go low and slow. Below you can see that none of the fat is leeching out which is what you see when people cook it at a heat that is too intense. Fat=flavor.
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As for the spinach, really onions and garlic is all you need topped with a splash of white wine vinegar for some acid. Spinach cooks down so I used a whole plastic box of baby spinach. When I eat this meal I like getting a little spinach on my fork and then a little salmon. Just works.
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Ingredients:
Salmon (wild caught Sockeye)
Wood Plank
Salmon Rub
1/3 cup brown sugar
2 tbs of Kosher Salt
2 tbs of Chili Powder
1 tbs of Ancho Chili Powder
1 tbs of Coriander
1 tbs of Onion Powder
1 tsp celery seeds
1 tsp Cumin
1 tsp Red and Black Pepper
1 tsp of Slap Ya Mama (or cayenne)

Spinach (small box)
4 cloves of garlic (minced
2 shallots diced
1 tbs of White Wine Vinegar
1 tbs of Coconut Oil
Pinch of Kosher Salt
Pinch of Pepper

Directions:
1. Make your rub by combining all the spices and mix them together. Taste it and adjust accordingly. You will have rub left over for future use so have fun with it and use what you like and keep it on hand so you can pull a salmon filet from the freezer and whip up a quick and healthy meal.

2. I used frozen filets so let them thaw and then removed the moisture by patting them down. I recommend leaving a little moisture for the spices to melt into the fish. Dust the top of the salmon with your rub. I put mine on a wood plank in a 300 degree oven and cooked it for about 20 minutes. IMG_9647

3. The spinach takes about 7-10 minutes so can time it to be ready when your salmon is ready. I added the coconut oil to a medium heated pan and let is melt fully. I added my shallots and cooked them until soft Then add your garlic and cook for 1 minute. Add your spinach and stir until wilted. I then seasoned it and added a splash of white wine vinegar. If you need more moisture to help the wilting, you can splash in some veggie or chicken stock or even water. IMG_9649IMG_9650

4. Let your salmon rest a bit while you are plating your spinach. Serve and enjoy with a nice glass of dry white wine or a glass of whiskey.
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Ham Gruyere Leek & Spinach Empanadas

Ham Gruyere Leek & Spinach Empanadas
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Ham Gruyere Leek & Spinach Empanadas

  • Servings: 6-8
  • Difficulty: moderate
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Jill bought me Ina Garten new cookbook “Make it Ahead”. I’m not a make it ahead kinda guy but I see the point when you are entertaining etc… She has a Ham & Leek Empanada recipe that looked good so I decided to give it a go. Wow they were amazing. Ina has always had great recipes but I think her last two books are her best. She is doing such a great job with simplicity but special recipes. Can’t wait to try some more.

People..these are for real! Pretty easy to make and the payoff is off the charts. I changed it a little bit but these babies are automatically on my “best of list”. After one try. You have a flaky delicate puff pastry filled with shaved ham and creamy Gruyere with the soft onion notes that leeks provide along with some spinach. I think the spinach was added to satisfy “healthy” guilt. She added basil that I excluded. I also doubled up on the mixture amount for each. Typical dude move.

I can see the ladies serving them at parties, showers, bible studies, book clubs, Downton Abbey watch parties, Easter etc.. Guys will like them too because they are really tasty. Gotta give em a try. Ina nailed this one.
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Ingredients:
Frozen Puff Pastry(I used 1 package, Ina used 2)
4 oz of deli shaved ham
4 oz of shredded Gruyere cheese (I used a Cheddar/Gruyere)
1 1/2 cups of Leeks (small diced the white and light green parts)
2 oz chopped fresh spinach
1/2 cup of grated Parmesan cheese
1 1/2 tbs of unsalted butter
1/3 cup of creme fraiche
AP flour for dusting pastry to avoid sticking
1 egg beaten with 2 tbs of milk for egg wash
Kosher Salt and Black Pepper.

Directions:
1. Preheat oven to 400 and line two baking sheets with parchment paper. Defrost your puff pastry

2. Thinly cut your leeks (in half and then diced into fingernail looking pieces). Wash them well and drain the water. In a medium heated pan, melt your butter and add your leeks. Stir until soft and then remove from the burner and add the creme fraiche and stir for a minute.

3. In a large bowl add your ham and Gruyere and top with the leek mixture. stir until combined and then add the spinach and Parmesan cheese. Set aside.
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4. Dust a board or your counter with flour. Whisk your egg wash but adding an egg and milk and beat until well combined. Unroll your puff pastry sheet and cut into four squares. Roll each out. Add your filling. Apply egg wash to the outer edges. Given I used all the mixture and half the puff pastry as Ina, I packed mine pretty full. I balled up the mixture so it was tight and then lifted the pastry square in one hand and folded the edges and gave them a pinch. Once sealed, I put them back on the board and used a fork to seal the edges and make them look better.
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5. Place your empanadas on the parchment lined baking sheet. Don’t crowd them or have them touch each other. Brush on the egg wash to the tops of each one and then lightly salt and pepper them.
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6. Bake them for about 20-25 minutes until golden brown. Remove and let them rest for 5 minutes.
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