Spinach Recipes

Pasta with courgette sauce and spinach balls

Ingredients

For the spinach balls
500g/1lb 2oz spinach leaves, washed thoroughly, tough stalks removed
2 free-range eggs, beaten
pinch freshly grated nutmeg
1 garlic clove, blended to a purée with ½ tsp water
110g/4oz fresh white breadcrumbs
50g/2oz parmesan, or similar vegetarian hard cheese, freshly grated
salt and freshly ground black pepper
2-3 tbsp olive oil

For the pasta sauce
8 tbsp olive oil
2 garlic cloves, peeled, finely chopped
1 chilli, finely chopped
2 courgettes, trimmed, finely grated
60g/2¼oz parmesan, or similar vegetarian hard cheese, freshly grated
salt and freshly ground black pepper
400g/14oz rigatoni, cooked according to packet instructions, drained (reserve a few spoonfuls of the cooking water)

Method
For the spinach balls, blanch the spinach leaves in a pan of salted, boiling water for 1-2 minutes, then drain well and refresh in cold water.
Using your hands, squeeze out as much water from the blanched spinach leaves as possible, then finely chop the spinach.
Transfer the blanched, drained spinach to a bowl, then stir in the beaten eggs, nutmeg, garlic purée, breadcrumbs and parmesan. Season to taste with salt and freshly ground black pepper. Mix well until the mixture binds together, adding more breadcrumbs or more water, as necessary, to bind the mixture.
Roll the spinach mixture into walnut-sized balls and place onto a baking tray.
Cover the base of a frying pan in a thin film of olive oil. Heat gently over a low to medium heat.
When the oil is hot, add the spinach balls, in batches if necessary, and fry for 4-5 minutes on each side, or until crisp and golden-brown all over. Remove from the pan using a slotted spoon and set aside to drain on kitchen paper. Keep warm. Repeat the process with the remaining spinach balls.
Meanwhile, for the pasta sauce, heat the oil in a separate frying pan over a medium heat. Add the garlic and chilli and fry for 1-2 minutes, or until softened but not coloured.
Add the courgettes and continue to fry for 3-4 minutes, or until the courgettes have started to soften.
Add the parmesan and season, to taste, with salt and freshly ground black pepper. Mix until well combined, then stir in the reserved cooking water from the pasta and the cooked, drained rigatoni.
To serve, divide the pasta and sauce equally among four serving plates. Place the fried spinach balls on top.

Source: BBC Food website

Calzone with greens

Ingredients
500g strong white bread flourgreens recipe-image
1 tsp dried yeast
1 tbsp olive oil
semolina or polenta for dusting

For the filling
12 slices chorizo
2 garlic clove, finely chopped
200g kale
cavolo nero or other leafy green
2 balls mozzarella, torn into pieces
walnut-size lump of Parmesan

Method
Put the flour, yeast, 1 tbsp oil, 300ml lukewarm water and a big pinch of salt in a bowl and mix to a soft, wettish dough. Knead in a mixer or by hand, lifting the dough as you work it to keep it light, until the dough is smooth – about 10 mins. Try not to add any more flour; it will get less wet as you work it, but should still be very soft when you finish kneading. Put in a bowl, cover and leave to rise for 2 hrs.
Heat oven to 200C/180C fan/gas 6. Put a pizza stone or heavy baking sheet in the oven. Cut any central tough veins out of the greens, then finely shred the leaves.
Divide the dough into 2 pieces. Roll one piece out into the largest rectangle that you can, then layer half the chorizo onto one half of it leaving a border around the edge. Sizzle the garlic in a little oil in a pan, then add the greens and toss. Tip half onto the chorizo, then add half the mozzarella and grate over lots of Parmesan. Fold the dough over, fold in and pinch the sides together, and slide onto a baking sheet dusted with semolina. Repeat with the remaining dough and filling, then bake for 15-20 mins or until puffed up and browned.

Recipe from Good Food magazine, February 2010

Quick mushroom & spinach lasagne

Ingredientsspinach recipe
1 tbsp olive oil
1 garlic clove, crushed
250g pack mushrooms, sliced
1 tsp thyme leaves, chopped
200g bag spinach
300g tub light soft cheese
4 tbsp grated parmesan (or vegetarian alternative)
6 fresh lasagne sheets
Method
Heat oven to 200C/180C fan/gas 6. Heat the oil in a large frying pan, add the garlic and cook for 1 min. Add the mushrooms and thyme, then cook for 3 mins until they start to soften. Throw in the spinach and stir until the heat of the pan wilts the leaves. Remove from the heat and stir in the soft cheese, 1 tbsp of the Parmesan and some seasoning.
Put a quarter of the spinach mix on the bottom of a medium-sized baking dish, lay 2 pasta sheets on top, then repeat until you have used all the pasta. Finish with the final quarter of the spinach mix, sprinkle over the rest of the Parmesan, then bake for 35 mins until golden and the pasta is tender.

Recipe from Good Food magazine, September 2011

Mushroom & Spinach risotto

Ingredients

1 tbsp olive oilSpinach Risotto

25g butter

1 onion , chopped

140g chestnut mushrooms , sliced

1 fat garlic clove , crushed

140g arborio rice

150ml dry white wine

4 sundried tomatoes , chopped

500ml hot vegetable stock

2 tbsp chopped fresh parsley

25g parmesan or vegetarian alternative, freshly grated

100g fresh young leaf spinach , washed if necessary

warm ciabatta and green salad , to serve

Method

Heat the oil and butter in a large deep frying pan. Add the onion and cook gently for 5 minutes until softened. Stir in the mushrooms and garlic and cook gently for 2-3 minutes.

Stir in the rice to coat with the onion and mushroom mixture. Pour in the wine and cook over a moderate heat for about 3 minutes, stirring from time to time, until the wine is absorbed.

Reduce to a gentle heat. Add the tomatoes and 125ml/ 4fl oz of the stock and cook for about 5 minutes until the liquid is absorbed. Pour in a further 125ml/4fl oz stock and continue cooking until absorbed. Repeat with the remaining stock, until it is all absorbed and the rice is creamy and tender.

Stir in the parsley and half the parmesan. Season to taste. Scatter the spinach over the risotto. Cover and cook gently for 4-5 minutes until the spinach has just wilted. Serve immediately sprinkled with the remaining parmesan.

Make the time to stir carefully during cooking to make this vegetarian Italian rice pot super creamy.

Recipe from http://www.bbcgoodfood.com/recipes