Posts Tagged ‘spinach’

Monday Menus

March 28, 2011

Who wants to follow Ginger? Not me. Not only is she an excellent writer, but apparently also a gourmet cook. Spinach dumplings? Those need a new name before I can add it to my family menu.

But then, I don’t menu plan. I just try to keep a lot of the same healthy things around and work with them. One of the staples at our house is actually an enormous bag of fresh baby spinach from Sam’s Club. Even with 7 to feed -it’s a lot of spinach.  And it turns slimy in less than two weeks. And I hate to waste anything. Especially something so good for us. So it is a daily challenge.

Sometimes I am very creative and I love it when I get away with it. Marcus wants PB and J every day for lunch. One day I only had some store-bought white bread . . . and so I sprinkled on 2 tsp. of wheat bran on the PB. Then I thought . . .Why not spinach? That should stick in there just fine too. Kind of harder to hide though. But worth a try. Marcus ate half his sandwich before he noticed it had green in it. He called out, “Hey, mom! Why is there salad in my sandwich?” Because you love salad Marcus. “Oh, thanks Mom.” Then he ate the other half. Success. So now he has PB & J and S sandwiches everyday and I feel way better about what I am serving up. Now, this wouldn’t work with ANY of my other children and I wouldn’t even eat it up myself. Gross! But here’s what does.

This may not be what we have exactly this week, but we have these dishes on a regular basis and NONE Of my children even blink an eye at all the spinach they are consuming.

Green Smoothie: Two to three mornings a week I fill the blender 1/2 way up with fresh spinach. Then throw in anything else you would normally put in your smoothie  -fruit, ice, yogurt, milk, etc. And blend it all up. No one will ever taste the spinach though they most likely will notice it looks like you are celebrating St. Patrick’s day. I can’t stand to make a smoothie now without spinach. It seems like such a waste.

Mashed Potatoes: Boil potatoes and add a generous amount of baby spinach just 1 minute  before pulling it off the stove. Then mash them up together. Don’t add spinach too early or the dish will turn all green. I like to add sour cream and parmesan cheese.

Homemade Pizza: I serve homemade pizza once a week. I always put fresh spinach right on top of the cheese. A lot of it. It looks like fresh basil. Once my kids realized that they couldn’t taste it they stopped complaining.

Marinara sauce: Always add as many veggies as you can to your can of spaghetti sauce. Diced cooked Carrots, onions, zucchini, are my favorites and of course. .  . Spinach. Gotta use that bag.

Clam Chowder: Last week I three it in with our chowder just before serving and once again, No complaints.

I never buy iceberg lettuce anymore. I buy romaine and spinach. That’s what we use for Tacos, sandwiches and all of our salads.

My favorite -Fresh Spinach salad: Throw spinach, fruit, nuts and parmesan cheese together and drizzle on this dressing.

1/3 cup sugar, 1 tsp. dried mustard, 1 tsp. salt, 1 tsp. onion flakes, 1 Tbsp. poppy seeds, 1/2 cup oil, 2 – 3 Tbsp. mayo, 1/4 cup raspberry or red wine vinegar, 1/4 cup rice vinegar. Mix in blender and store in fridge.

There are tons of other ways I use spinach. Cooked or Fresh. So I challenge all of you to buy yourself a big bag and make it your quest to incorporate it into this weeks meals.  Good luck and I hope your family doesn’t hate me for it.

So don’t be afraid. Throw in a little Spinach. Or a lot.

It’s good for you.