3.30.17 Spinach with Everything
I have to admit, I really struggled with what to call this dish. In fact, it’s safe to say that the only reason I settled on Spinach with Everything was that I desperately needed to post and coming up with just the right name was the only thing holding me back. With infinite time and energy, I’d be able to come up with a better name; one that accurately illustrates why this dish has got to be the best way to eat spinach. It’s a bold claim I know, but just listen.
I’ve always felt that spinach gets a bad rap; more often than not relegated to forgetful side dish status. But let’s think about this for a minute. Come early spring, what’s the first fresh green thing you find at farmer’s markets amid all the old cellared root veggies? Frost sweetened spinach. And in my opinion, the first fresh greens of the year have got to be celebrated.
I picked up plenty of the stuff at a recent farmers’ market, and immediately set to work cooking it up. And as icing on the cake, I looked through my fridge, found all of my favorite things, and added them in as well. Things like garlicky naan, chopped up and roasted until crispy, creamy burrata, toasty walnuts, tomatoes, shallots - as the name implies, everything. I thought at one point I may have gone a bit overboard, but when I tasted this glorious mess, and realized that what I had on my hands was some of the best spinach I’d ever had. It’s hearty enough to work as a main dish (topped with a runny fried egg if you’re craving more protein), but also makes a great side to a piece of roasted fish or grilled chicken. The fact remains, Spinach with Everything, is everything.
Spinach with Everything
Serves 2 as a main course or 4 as a side dish
- 3 oz naan or pita bread, cut into 1” pieces
- 2 ½ Tbsp olive oil, divided
- 1 garlic clove, smashed
- ⅓ cup walnuts
- 1 medium shallot, thinly sliced
- 1 cup cherry tomatoes, halved
- ½ tsp salt
- ½ tsp pepper
- ¼ tsp crushed red pepper flakes
- 2 tsp red wine vinegar
- 1 tsp honey
- ⅓ lb spinach, roughly chopped
- 4 oz burrata, torn into pieces
- 1 Tbsp chopped chives
1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
2. Toss the naan or pita bread and smashed garlic with ½ Tbsp olive oil. Spread on one side of a baking sheet, spread the walnuts on the other. Place in oven and bake until golden and toasty, about 10-12 minutes.
3. Heat 1 Tbsp olive oil in a pan over medium high, then add the shallot and cook until it just starts to crisp up, about 3-4 minutes. Add the tomatoes, salt, pepper, and crushed red pepper and cook until tomatoes soften, another 2-3 minutes. Add the remaining 1 Tbsp olive oil, red wine vinegar, and honey and cook 1 minute more.
4. Remove pan from heat and add the spinach, tossing until coated and just beginning to wilt. Mix in the toasted naan or pita, and walnuts. Transfer to a plate, top with torn burrata and chives and serve immediately.