Spinach-Chevre-Pine Nut Rollups

This wonderful breakfast recipe came to me via Pinterest, originally from a site called On My Plate.
It called for Feta, but I am using fresh goat cheese (shocking, I know). It’s so quick and easy, you can manage it even if you only have 15 min to prep!
(adapted from a recipe from Better Homes and Gardens)
6 green onions, chopped
3 cloves garlic, minced
1 tablespoon olive oil
12 ounces fresh baby spinach, chopped
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
1 13.8-ounce package refrigerated pizza dough
1/4 cup crumbled goat cheese
2-4 tablespoons toasted pine nuts
1 tablespoon butter, melted
1/4 cup finely shredded Parmesan cheese

Preheat oven to 375 degrees.
Spray twelve muffin cups with non-stick cooking spray; set aside.
In a large skillet cook green onions and garlic in 1 tablespoon of the oil until tender.
Add spinach; cook and stir over medium heat just until wilted.
Season with salt and pepper.
Drain off excess liquid. (This step takes awhile. Spinach releases A LOT of liquid. Press it down in a colander, and then squeeze it out in handfuls.)
Set aside to cool.
On a well-floured surface, unroll pizza dough and shape into a 12×8-inch rectangle.
Spread spinach mixture to within 1 inch of the edges of dough.
Sprinkle with feta cheese and pine nuts.
Starting with one of the long sides, roll dough into a spiral.
Slice roll into 12 pieces.
Place cut side up in prepared muffin cups.
Brush with butter and sprinkle with Parmesan cheese.
Bake for 18 to 20 minutes or until golden brown.
Let stand in muffin cups for 2 minutes.
Carefully remove from cups and serve warm.

Spinach, Chevre and Roasted Garlic Dip

We just dug up our garlic bulbs this weekend, and they smell so awesome! They are drying now in the garage and will then go into storage in dark paper bags to await culinary greatness. This is one recipe that will do justice to them. And the spinach will give you a nice boost to your healthiness, to say nothing of the goat cheese! I really feel you could go with 100% chevre, esp. if you want to cut the fat down by half:)

Love the dip, love the cute little pan!

Serves 4

Ingredients

  • 5 oz. frozen spinach
  • 8 oz. cream cheese, softened
  • 4 oz. goat cheese, softened
  • 1/2 head of roasted garlic (directions here)
  • Parmesan cheese
  • salt and freshly ground pepper

Directions

Preheat the oven to 350°F.

Thaw and drain the spinach well.  Remove the roasted garlic by squeezing the cloves – it should have the consistency of a paste – if it doesn’t, quickly run your knife through the garlic.

Using a spatula, mix the cream cheese, goat cheese and garlic.  Fold in the spinach.  Add salt and pepper to taste.

Place mixture in an oven safe dish and sprinkle with the Parmesan cheese.  Cook for 20-25 minutes or until completely warmed through and the top is golden brown.

Thanks to the Urban Spork for the recipe and photo:)

Chevre and Pistachio Appetizers

These little fresh goat cheese bites are sooo simple to throw together, you’ll wonder why you didn’t think of this already! Recipe makes 48 bites.

Ingredients

  • 11 ounces fresh goat cheese
  • 4 ounces coarsely chopped pisatchio nuts
  • 4 shakes of your favorite seasoning (can be truffle salt, garlic salt, herbs or herbed grated aged cheese)
  • 48 washed and dried baby spinach leaves

Directions

  1. Bring goat cheese to room temperature. Using your hands, roll forty-eight 1/2-inch balls, and place them on a piece of parchment paper. Shake the nuts in a fine mesh sieve to remove dust, then place in a small, shallow bowl. Roll each cheese ball in the nuts to coat evenly.
  2. The cheese balls can be prepared the day before the event. Store them in the refrigerator in an airtight container until ready to serve.
  3. To serve, arrange the spinach leaves on a serving tray, and place each cheese ball on a leaf. Serve immediately.

     

    Thanks to Martha Stewart again:)

Spinach and Gruyere Souffle

Another cold summer day in Northern Michigan, so I have to content myself with a cool weather recipe. But such a tasty one — puffy, creamy, cheesy, spinachy goodness! Thanks, Martha Stewart, for the secret ingredients list! IMHO, you can use either Gruyere or any aged goat cheese!

You don't need the expensive copper ramekin!

Ingredients

  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter, room temperature, plus more for baking dish
  • 1/3 cup plain dried breadcrumbs
  • 5 cups (5 ounces) packed spinach, trimmed and washed
  • 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • 3/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons whole milk
  • 1/2 cup grated goat or cow Gruyere cheese
  • Coarse salt and ground pepper
  • 2 large eggs, separated, plus 2 large egg whites

Directions

  1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Butter a round 1-quart tall-sided baking dish and dust with breadcrumbs; set aside. In a large skillet, heat 2 tablespoons water over medium-high. Add spinach and cook, stirring constantly, until wilted, about 4 minutes. Transfer to a strainer to cool; press to release liquid.
  2. In a medium saucepan, melt butter over medium until bubbling. Add flour and whisk until a paste forms. Continue to cook until pale blond in color, 2 to 3 minutes. Whisking, gradually add milk. Cook, whisking, until lumps are gone and mixture is thickened, 3 to 5 minutes. Remove from heat. Stir in cheese until melted; season with salt and pepper. Transfer souffle base to a large bowl.
  3. In a food processor, pulse spinach and egg yolks until coarsely pureed. Add 1/4 cup souffle base; pulse until blended. Stir spinach mixture into remaining souffle base. (To store, press plastic wrap against surface and keep at room temperature, up to 4 hours.)
  4. In a large bowl, using an electric mixer, beat 4 egg whites and pinch of salt on medium-high until stiff peaks form (do not overbeat), about 3 minutes. In 2 additions, gently fold egg whites into souffle base. Pour batter into prepared dish and bake until souffle is tall, browned, and firm to the touch, about 35 minutes. (Avoid opening oven during first 25 minutes of baking.) Serve immediately.

Cook’s Note

Souffles are much simpler to make than you think. Just stir egg yolks and spinach into cheese sauce to create your base. All that is left is to fold in egg whites and bake.

 

 

Scrambled Pasta and Spring Greens

We are so lucky to have Peacefield Farm’s fresh spinach from their hoop house already! If you can find fresh spinach and herbs (perhaps your own?), you too can have a breath of springtime on a plate:

Who doesn't love creamy pasta for dinner?

A Straight from the Farm Original recipe

 

Ingredients
½ lb (half the box) spaghetti or linguini, cooked
3 T. olive oil
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 green bell pepper, sliced thinly
¼ t. crushed red pepper flakes
5 large eggs (or 7 egg whites)
½ C. grated goat Parmesan, plus more for serving

1 cup fresh goat cheese
1 t. kosher salt
Freshly ground pepper to taste
2 C. (packed) mache, washed and trimmed
1 C. chopped sorrel or 3 Cups chopped spinach
½ C. finely chopped basil leaves*
*You can also use frozen basil puree, frozen into cubes.  One cube, thawed, worked perfectly.
Directions:

Heat the oil in a large skillet over medium heat and sauté the garlic, green pepper and red pepper flakes until the vegetables are tender and just barely starting to brown at the edges.  Meanwhile, in a medium bowl, whisk together the eggs, parmesan, fresh goat cheese, salt and pepper.  If using thawed basil puree, add it to the eggs and whisk well to combine.
Place the cooked pasta, mache and sorrel in the skillet and toss with tongs to get everything combined.  Pour over the egg mixture and toss until eggs begin to set up.  You may need to scrape the bottom of the skillet with the spatula to lift the eggs up a bit.  If using fresh basil, add it soon after the eggs and continue to toss to combine.
When eggs are set to your liking (about 4-5 minutes), remove skillet from heat and serve pasta with extra Parmesan.  Good reheated gently in the microwave.
(serves 6)

Roasted Vegetable Lasagna

From an admirer-blog, Yum-Yum-Yummy, we get today’s featured recipe which results in a toothsome and satisfying all-vegetable lasagna. Nicely done!

the prep:
- bring large pot of water to a boil & add whole-wheat lasagna pasta sheets (approx 12 large pieces).
– just half-cook the pasta sheets, until slightly al dente.
– preheat oven to 375F
– lightly brush medium-sized baking pan w/ extra-virgin olive oil (evoo)
– roast 1 small acorn squash (tip: you may want to roast the acorn squash the day prior, if you’re tight on time for weeknight meals.)

the layers:
– line baking pan w/ 3 sheets of half-cooked lasagna pasta
– spread 3/4 cup light cottage cheese
- spread 1/2 of roasted acorn squash (don’t worry about covering the entire layer with squash, but try to distribute evenly.)

- add 1/3 cup organic spinach leaves (fresh, not frozen)
– add 1/3 cup grape tomatoes (halved)
– add 1/8 cup fresh parsley (finely chopped)
– season w/ 1/2 tsp ground nutmeg & 1/2 ground black peppercorns
– sprinkle generously 3/4 cup grated cheese
(tip: a mixture of chevre, gruyere & gouda works well since all of them melt and meld nicely and are not overly strong in taste.)
- add another layer of pasta sheets & repeat instructions above for the second layer of filling

- add top layer of pasta: 3 sheets of half-cooked lasagna
– add 1/3 cup organic spinach leaves

- sprinkle generously 1/2 cup grated cheese, mixed w/ 1/8 cup fresh parsley (finely chopped)
– sprinkle roasted acorn squash seeds (optional)

- bake uncovered for 40min at 375F
– allow to cool on rack before slicing lasagna

Spinach dumplings with fresh goat cheese

I’ve been snooping around German blogs again, looking for good stuff to eat. And if you don’t mind a wee tad adventure, come along….

These dumplings are classic southern German/Tyrolean. They work as a carbo course with dinner, or even just on their own. Thank you to Rock the Kitchen for the inspiration and the yummy photo!

 

Ingredients

100 g day-old bread

100 ml milk

250 g frozen spinach (or cooked/chopped/squeezed of liquid)

1 small onion

1 garlic clove

1 Tbsp canola or olive oil

30 g fresh goat cheese

25 g freshly grated Emmenthaler, Gouda, Raclette or Gruyere cheese

75 g flour

1 egg

Salt and Pepper to taste

Nutmeg

15 g butter

Freshly grated Parmesan

Directions

Tear bread into small chunks, put in bowl and pour milk over bread. Allow to soak for 15 min.

If using frozen spinach, thaw and then press together to wring out water. Chop coarsely. Peel onion and garlic, chop finely.

Heat canola or olive oil in saute pan and fry onion and garlic until just starting to become transparent. Cool slightly and then mix together with spinach and milk-soaked bread. Add in goat cheese, grated cheese. flour and egg, as well as salt, pepper and nutmeg. Mix well with hands. Allow flavors to meld for 10 minutes.

Bring water in a large pot to boil and salt when boiling. Take enough dumpling dough from the bowl to form a golf ball-sized dumpling and carefully lower into the boiling water. Lower the temperature on the pot to simmer and continue making dumplings for the pot until all dough is gone. Simmer dumplings for 15 min.

Just before the dumplings are done, melt butter in the saute pan and allow it to brown ever so slightly. Put the cooked dumplings in the pan and roll them around to coat. Sprinkle grated parmesan over the top of the dumplings and serve.

If desired, you can crumble cooked bacon into the dumpling dough or cut Canadian bacon or ham into small cubes and mix them in before cooking. You could also brown the dumplings in bacon grease after cooking, for a heartier flavor.

The strata for people who hate strata….

Until I met this strata, I hated them, too. Have to admit, I’m not really a french toast person, either. Something about a hatred of wet bread that I inherited from my dad. But this one changed it all.

You MUST start with excellent bread. I feel that is the essential key. I started with a gorgeous ciabatta ( just from Meijer’s, so not really expensive). You could use brioche with the same excellent results. This recipe is really so fantastic, and the more veggies you put in it, the better it gets. Oh, and of course, there’s lots of cheese in there:)

I do apologize, the smell and seductiveness of the cooked strata was so compelling that I never got a pic of the finished dish….it disappeared in minutes, with people lined up for second helpings.

 

If it looks this good uncooked, imagine the final product! Sorry I missed the cooked version picture!

 

Spinach, Asparagus, Mushroom and Cheese Strata
Adapted from Smitten Kitchen and Annie’s Eats

  • 3 tbsp. unsalted butter
  • 1½ cups onion, finely chopped
  • 2 (10 oz.) packages frozen chopped spinach, thawed and well-drained
  • 1 pound of cleaned and chopped asparagus
  • 1/2 pound cleaned and quartered portobella mushrooms
  • 1 tsp. salt, divided
  • ½ tsp. pepper, divided
  • Dash freshly grated nutmeg
  • 1 Tbsp. prepared Dijon mustard
  • 8 cups cubed French or Italian bread, cut into 1-inch cubes
  • 6 oz. coarsely grated Gruyere or Gouda  (about 2 cups)
  • 6 oz. fresh goat cheese (chevre)
  • 2 oz. finely grated Parmesan (about 2/3 cup)
  • 9 large eggs
  • 2¾ cup milk

Melt the butter in a medium skillet over medium heat. Add the onions to the pan and sauté until soft, about 5 minutes. Add the chopped mushrooms and cook down until soft and liquid has mostly boiled off. Add ½ teaspoon of the salt, ¼ teaspoon of the pepper, and the nutmeg, and continue to cook for 1 minute more. Stir in the spinach, remove from the heat and set aside.

Blanch asparagus in boiling water for 2 min, drain and stir into the spinach-onion mix. Allow to cool.

Butter the inside of a 2½-3 quart baking dish. Layer the bottom of the dish with one third of the bread cubes. Top with one third of the spinach-asparagus mixture and one third of each of the cheeses. Repeat these layers twice more with the bread, spinach and cheese.

In a medium bowl, combine the eggs, milk, the remaining ½ teaspoon of the salt, ¼ teaspoon of the pepper, and 1 Tbsp. Dijon mustard. Whisk together until blended. Pour the mixture evenly over the bread and spinach layers in the baking dish. Cover with plastic wrap and chill for at least 8 hours or up to 1 day.

Remove from the refrigerator 30 minutes before baking. Preheat the oven to 350˚ F. Bake uncovered until puffed, golden brown and cooked through, 45-55 minutes. Let stand at least 5 minutes before serving.

It is to-die-for. Completely. Even if it is a strata.

Spanakopitakia (little Spanakopitas)

Given that Jamie Oliver’s Spinach Goat Cheese Risotto is the perennial favorite item on this blog, I thought it wise to feature another spinach goat cheese combo. This time it’s the greek flaky-crispy triangles, folded as individual servings. These are sure to be a winner for dinner!

Moist and savory inside, crispy-buttery outside!

Ingredients

2 onions, chopped

20 oz pkg of frozen, chopped, thawed and well-drained spinach

1 lb feta or fresh goat cheese, preferably at room temperature

12 oz drained cottage cheese

6 well-beaten eggs

1/2 C Italian style bread crumbs

1 box frozen filo dough (thawed)

Directions

Melted butter (about 3/4 C) mixed with some olive oil (about 1/8 C) and kept warm.

In a very large fry pan, saute the onion in a little oil for about five minutes. Add spinach and let simmer until most moisture is gone.

In a good-sized bowl, crumble the feta or goat cheese and mix with the cottage cheese.

In another bowl, beat the eggs and then pour into the cheese mixture. Mix well.

Stir bread crumbs into the spinach/onion mixture. Then add the cheese mixture. Mix well.

Open the thawed filo dough and unroll. Keep a moist towel available to cover the dough as it dries quickly and will then crack. Cut the dough in half, length wise. Lay a piece of the cut dough down, butter it lightly with the butter/oil mixture. Repeat this step. Add one more layer of filo and drop a heaping tablespoon of the cheese/spinach mixture on the dough at one end. Fold the dough over as if you are folding a flag (in a triangle pattern), until all the dough is used. Place on air-bake pan and brush the top with the butter/olive oil mixture. Repeat until all ingredients are gone. You will end up with lots of individual triangles.

Bake at 400 degrees for about 18 to 20 minutes or until lightly browned. Serve warm.

Eat soon or wrap individual triangles in wax paper to freeze.
Thanks to Shawna Olson for the recipe!

NY Resolution: eat more quiche!

Quiche is a great alternative to meat-dense meals, and will accommodate a great variety of vegetables, cheeses and other tasty ingredients. My household will be eating more of them in 2011 — I hope you find this idea could work for you, too. If you dial down on the meat, eating more eggs will likely NOT boost your cholesterol. Give it a try, eggs are inexpensive protein!

Here’s a nice variation on the theme. Think about topping it with tomato slices and zucchini (photo from ChaosQueen) — beautiful, no?

Swiss And Spinach Quiche
Ingredients: 

  Amount  Measure       Ingredient -- Preparation Method
--------  ------------  --------------------------------
  1       shaped shell  prepared piecrust ( I love Marie Callender's)
  4             ounces  swiss, gouda or fontina cheese -- cut into strips
  1                cup  mozzarella cheese
  2        tablespoons  flour
  1                cup  skim milk
  3                     egg -- slightly beaten
     1/4      teaspoon  salt
     1/2      teaspoon  black pepper
     1/4      teaspoon  nutmeg
     1        package  frozen spinach -- cooked and drained
     4        ounces   fresh goat cheese (chevre)
Preparation:Heat oven to 450 degrees F. Pre-bake prepared piecrust for 10 minutes. After removing piecrust from oven, turn heat down to 375 degrees F. In medium bowl, toss cheeses with flour, and arrange evenly over crust. Using same bowl, mix milk, eggs, salt, pepper, nutmeg and spinach until blended. Pour over cheese and dot with pinches of fresh goat cheese, and if desired, alternating slices of fresh tomato and zucchini. Bake 40 to 50 minutes or until golden brown. Serve warm.