02 December 2010

Sicilian Style Spinach ...

Jazzed Up Spinach!

A while ago, I happened on this wonderful cook book that was put out by The Culinary Institute of America and dedicated to vegetables. I have been slowly wending my way through the book, trying different recipes and finding that some are definitely keepers. Take this spinach recipe ...it's chock full of flavors. Just look at the list of ingredients! There are sweet, salty, garlic-y, and nutty flavors that mingle with the green and astringent flavor of the spinach. Perhaps I am so enthusiatic because spinach is my favorite dark, leafy green.

Who knows, but look out, Popeye! You're in for a burst of nutrition above and beyond that plain old can of power!

Wintertime light  makes for horrible photography ... sorry!

I had to play only a little with this recipe. I halved it for one thing and I used anchovy paste instead of the one lone anchovy fillet. Other than that, I made it to the specs of the recipe. Oh, okay. I was more generous with the raisins too. 

Major marbling going on in these steaks, but they were tender!

Because Silent Bob and I came in late from a movie, ... new Harry Potter, woot, woot! ... I was all about keeping dinner really simple and fast, so I rubbed up some sirloin steaks with olive oil, kosher salt,  and pepper and did a fast broil. While the spinach wilted, I browned up mushrooms for the steaks and cracked a bottle of wine.

Yum! Smothered steaks!

Spinach for Two ... so good!

Sicilian Style Spinach
courtesy of Culinary Institute of America’s Vegetables


1 tbsp. olive oil
2 tbsp. diced pancetta or bacon
1 anchovy fillet, chopped
¼ c. minced onion
1 tbsp. minced garlic
8 c. spinach leaves, picked over, washed and patted or spun dry
Salt and pepper, to taste
2 tbsp. golden raisins
1 tbsp. toasted pine nuts

Making the Dish:

1. Dice the pancetta or bacon and brown until crispy in a large sauté pan.

2. When bacon is crisp, add the olive oil, minced onion, garlic, and anchovy and sauté until the garlic smells heavenly.

3. Add the spinach and toss the aromatics to incorporate them. Continue sauté for about 3 to 4 minutes until the spinach is bright green and thoroughly wilted and hot.

4. Toss the most of the raisins and pine nuts in and turn to incorporate.

5. Choose a pretty platter to present the dish, turn the spinach onto the platter and sprinkle the rest of the raisins and pine nuts over the top.

6. Serve immediately.


  1. Oh dear. That looks wonderful, but my guy would end up with a little pile of raisins on the side of his plate at the end of the meal. I used to put a handful of currents in with the swiss chard, but it discourages me to see someone pick out bits from a dish. On the other hand, most things can be improved with a bit of bacon :-)

  2. wow, great spinach dish... i love the added pine nuts, what a great idea... very Christmassy too with the currents, lovely... oh and great steak too... mouth watering just thinking about it

  3. I could eat spinach anyway, anytime, made by anyone. Pine nuts are so buttery and the raisins so sweet. Mmmmm!!!! Can't wait to try this one.

  4. looks great thanks for sharing :O)

  5. Sprout Sara3/12/10 9:46 AM

    YUM. I love spinach. I wonder where I got that from?! I still remember in 1st(?) grade when learning about vegetables and each kid in class had to bring in their favorite veggie dish from home for a potluck. I brought creamed spinach and all the kids turned their noses up at it until they tried it. I think that dish was the only one that was completely gone by the end of class!

  6. @ Sprout Sara - Hey! I remember masking that creamed spinach and the creamed carrots for Eric's Little on the Prairie day ... in 4th grade.
    Getting kids to eat veggies is always a chore ...

  7. Susan, that's a delicious plate of greens......love the nutty topping! And yes, this is the time when photographers (like us), without studio lights long for spring and summer!

  8. Oh I must say this sprinach dish does look very appealing.

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