Christopher Hirsheimer and Melissa Hamilton, the cooking-eating-photographing-illustrating duo that created Canal House Cooking Volume No. 6, have a knack for making already great dishes even better. Take for example their Creamed Spinach.
At first glance the recipe includes all of the traditional ingredients—spinach, garlic, butter, and cream—but upon further inspection, you'll notice a few extra touches. Like ginger, in the form of a bright ginger-garlic paste, as well as starchy diced potatoes that thicken the spinach without having to worry about a roux. It's these kinds of smart little touches that make Hamilton and Hirsheimer the queens of taking satisfying, timeless dishes to the next level. And it's that timelessness that makes the Canal House series so appealing.
As always with our Cook the Book feature, we have five (5) copies of Canal House Cooking Volume No. 6 to give away this week.
Reprinted with permission from Canal House Cooking Volume No. 6 by Christopher Hirsheimer and Melissa Hamilton, copyright © 2011. Published by Canal House.
- For the Ginger-Garlic paste:
- One 5-inch finger fresh ginger, peeled and chopped
- 6 cloves garlic
- Really good extra-virgin olive oil
- For the spinach:
- 3 tablespoons butter
- 1 potato, peeled and diced
- Salt and pepper
- ¼ cup heavy cream
- 1 pound washed young spinach
For the Ginger-Garlic Paste, pulse the ginger, garlic, and a pinch of salt in a food processor or blender until smooth. Add a little water to thin the paste. Store in a covered container with a little olive oil on the surface. Keeps for about a week.
For the spinach, melt the butter in a large pot over medium heat. Add 1 big tablespoon Ginger-Garlic Paste and cook for a minute, swirling it in the butter. Add the potatoes and stir until well coated. Season with salt and pepper. Reduce heat to medium-low, cover, and cook until tender but not browned, about 10 minutes.
Add the cream and pile the spinach into the pot, pressing it down so that you can fit it all in. Cover and cook until the spinach wilts, about 10 minutes. Fold the spinach into the potatoes and cream, and serve.