Spinach

I thought I would write about growing and cooking about spinach today. It is a vegetable I have only recently come to.  Growing up it was not a known veg - except in tins for Popeye! Spinach is full of iron and other good things apparently.

I have learnt to only grow half a dozen plants as that is more than enough for two of us. I sow some in March to harvest in that "hungry gap" before summer veg kicks in, and some in June to harvest  for winter veg.  We use our poly tunnel (which only has net on the lower sides so is not fully enclosed and a bit cooler than a fully covered one) but I think these would be fine in a  cold frame or a pot on a patio that can be moved to shelter to expand its season.


This packet cost £1.95 and will last two seasons. I start them off in modules and plant out when first leaves are well formed.

I use these as pick and come again plants, taking the outside leaves as needed.  These have already been picked over twice. 


This handful is more than enough as an ingredient in most dishes. I rarely cook it as just a veg - when the plants are big and prolific  (usually just before they are over) I do fill a pot just to use them up.
I checked My Supermarket today and you are paying 54p for 100 grams. Packaged supermarket spinach does not last long so having some to hand is less wasteful. I have probably picked £1.50's worth and am well on the way to covering propagation costs.

This week I have stirred a good handful into the lat stages of a chicken risotto.  I usually put in a handful of frozen peas so that was a saving from brought in food.
I also put another handful under two servings of  haddock which were then topped with breadcrumbs (left over bread crusts put through the liquidizer) and some grated cheese and some tomatoes sliced. Yum.

I need to leave the plants to make some more leaves so am planning on using some more perhaps at the weekend  for a sausage and spinach spaghetti (see Delicious magazine web site).  I have no creme fraiche in the fridge so I may have to think of an alternative like cheese sauce?  I was listening to Radio 4's Food Cupboard (Jay Raynor) the other day where they suggested not have an ingredient in a recipe is an opportunity to invent a new dish!

This is an easy crop and recommend trying it!


Comments

  1. My husband loves spinach, me, well I have never acquired a taste for it. I use leaf lettuce and chard in the same way as you do spinach, taking just the outer leaves.

    God bless.

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  2. I've never quite got to grips with cooked spinach but I do love it raw as a salad with grated raw beetroot and a vinaigrette dressing-x-

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  3. Love spinach salad with hard boiled egg, raw mushrooms, bacon bits and a dressing. Very yummy!

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  4. Never had a lot of luck growing spinach , decided chard was so much easier and my other half didnt notice if i didnt mention it . The other day i saw on an american blog that they dont eat coloured chard stems ? we have always eaten them and nothing untoward has happened

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  5. Spinach is my out and out favourite veg, I could eat pounds of the stuff!
    I was such a fan as a child that dad grew loads on his allotment, just to keep me fed.
    I prefer 'proper' spinach to the perpetual variety, but am quite happy to eat any sort I can get my hands on, or rather, mouth around!
    I really love it just wilted in a hot pan, on top of......well anything really!
    Ours is doing quite well this year, I think it likes the cooler weather.

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  6. Small confession - I buy frozen spinach. It's great! I love it topped with a poached egg for breakfast.

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  7. I grew spinach last year and must get some more for this. It really is a very versatile veg.
    xx

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