BY: EARTHA LOWE
Nothing short of astonishing is the countless ways to incorporate spinach into your meal plan and enjoy a variety of nutritional benefits. Spinach stands out as an impressive leafy green rich in water-soluble vitamins, minerals (especially iron), and a wide variety of phytonutrients, and is not only commonplace in salad bars, but in many different types of cuisine. It is important to recognize the amazing versatility of spinach, a food widely enjoyed even as a smoothie add-in.
Some of the best cooking methods for spinach include steaming or sautéd. To steam spinach, place it in a covered saucepan with about a tablespoon of water (or with the water that clings to its leaves after washing). Cook about 4 minutes, until the spinach is bright green and tender. Today’s recipe showcases healthy sautéd greens, including spinach, served on top of a crisp, tender-crusted puff pastry. Of all the pastries that exist, puff pastry is a favourite as it’s really easy to work with. Cut this dish into bite-sized pieces for an appetizer to serve many, or pair it with a big salad for a light dinner.
Puff Pastry with Greens
- 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
- 5 oz spinach leaves, stems removed
- 1 small red onion, thinly sliced
- 3 cloves garlic, minced
- 4 cups mustard greens, loosely packed
- 1 x 500g pack puff pastry (vegan option available)
- Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
Preheat oven to 375°F (190°C). Line a baking tray with parchment paper.
Heat the oil in a large skillet. Add the garlic and onion and sauté for 2 minutes. Add the spinach and mustard greens. Continue to sauté until greens are tender, about 3 – 4 minutes. Season to taste with salt and pepper to taste. Remove from heat.
Roll out the puff pastry on a floured surface to a rectangle and transfer to the baking sheet. Top with the spinach mixture, leaving a 1-inch border around the edge for it to puff up during baking. Place in the oven and bake for 15 – 20 minutes, or until the puff pastry is flaky and just starting to brown. Remove from the oven, slice, and serve.
Tip: This dish tastes amazing paired with a creamy garlic dip.
Category: vegan, vegetarian
Prep and cook time: 30 minutes
Difficulty: super easy!
Bonus recipe: Spinach, Orange & Mango Smoothie
Spinach is in it! Even the most health-conscious diner can get to the end of a day and forget to eat a leafy green; life gets busy. Or maybe, you are not that crazy about eating vegetables. But what if there was a way to veg out by making several servings of fruits and vegetables into a delicious, easy-to-consume snack that require no cooking, very little chopping, and no chewing? Odds are, sitting on your kitchen counter is a tool that can turn any variety of fruits and vegetables you missed eating on any given day, into enticing drinks in moments: the blender.
- 2 cups packed spinach leaves
- 2 cups frozen mango
- 1 orange, peeled
- 1/4 cup dry oats
- 1 1/2 cups almond milk
Add all ingredients in a good blender. Blend until smooth. Serve immediately.
Category: vegan, vegetarian
Prep time: 10 minutes
Serves: 2 – 3 cups
Tip: Adjust ingredients as necessary to achieve desired taste.