Friday, February 5, 2010

Creamed Spinach – King of the Steakhouse Side Dishes


While in Vegas, I had a marvelous steak lunch at the Strip House, located in the Planet Hollywood Resort & Ca
sino. Along with the beautifully aged steaks, we enjoyed two stellar sides.

One was a potato dish called Potatoes Romanoff, which Executive Chef John Schenk says he learned from his mother back in Buffalo, NY. I've posted the written recipe for Potatoes Romanoff on my American Foods site, in case you want to give it a go.

The other was my favorite non-potato steakhouse side dish, creamed spinach. Since creamed spinach is one of the side dishes I have to do for the cookbook, and since I haven’t had a new video up in a while, I decided to film this recipe while its creamy deliciousness was still fresh in my mind.

There is only one real secret to great creamed spinach…you have to really squeeze out all the water after you wilt it. If you do, the buttery béchamel sauce coats the spinach to form a thick, satisfying pile of greens that you can almost stand a fork up in. If you don’t, you will be amazed at how the water from the spinach turns your thick, tasty sauce into a pool of pale green disappointment.

Creamed spinach is an easy recipe, but it used to require quite a commitment to make, since washing and picking spinach is tedious and really no fun at all. Nowadays, big bags of pre-washed, baby spinach are common at the supermarket, which makes this recipe a snap. Enjoy!




Ingredients:
1 stick butter
24 ounces baby spinach
1/2 onion, finely diced
1 whole clove
4 cloves garlic, very finely minced
1/3 cup flour
1 1/2 cups milk
salt and pepper, to taste
large pinch of freshly ground nutmeg

63 comments:

Wendy B. said...

Ha, John, it's so funny that you posted this side dish today. I visited your site earlier today looking for an inspirational side dish idea for the steak dinner I was making for guests this evening. Sadly, I didn't find anything (not that you don't have any other great sides but nothing jumped out at me) so I ended up creating my own. I did a mixture of roasted beets and asparagus with balsamic vinegar, topped with slices of chevre. It turned out really well but I would far rather have had creamed spinach!! It's definitely on my list for our next steak dinner.

Chef John said...

that sounds great!

Nadim said...

Is there a variant with cheese? Can you recommend a type?

Balu said...

Ok, I asked my neighbour who has a wall pointing west. He agreed that I can build a window there, but I'm missing the exact dimensions.

Are you getting sloppy in your recipe descriptions?

;-)

Sean said...

I love the creamed spinach from Boston Market. I never tried making it from scratch though, maybe I should.

Tracy said...

I LOVE your blog and your videos!! I do wish you would write out the instruction. Since my computer is upstairs in the office and I can't watch and cook along with you. : ( Just an idea.

Chef John said...

beleive me, you have way more time to type recipes than i do! ;-)

most all recipes you see now also have written recipes that are going in the cookbook. they will be posted here, and/or on my American food site.

fungirl said...

That recipe is delicious as is, but I substituted leeks for the onions, and OMG!!! Went so well with the filet mignons we had last night! Keep up the great work!

info said...

Try this with really crispy hash browns (and steak, of course). Perfect mix of flavors and textures. Heaven on earth, or at least on a plate.

Scott - Boston said...

I once owed a friend a big favor so I took him to S.F.'s House of Prime Rib. I couldn't believe the cart, creamed spinach, etc..

Fast forward: Made this creamed spinach for the kids tonight (crazy delicious). When the kids asked me what else we were having, I told them, "Just watch, a man will be here momentarily with a cart... you'll see." We sat in my kitchen for almost 3 hours, no man, no cart. The kids were crying.

Chef, where did I screw this recipe up? I want the man with the cart.

Scott - Boston

Scott - Boston said...

BTW Chef, you've had me sold on using real nutmeg. It's totally different than the dried powder, like you've said. But I've noticed it comes on really strong and use only just a little. Good stuff. Still no cart, though.

Chef John said...

Yes, metaphorically speaking, we are all waiting for the man with the cart. ;-)

tom@roadsidecottagerecipes said...

Actually I've never tried creamed spinach with steak before but its a really good combo. The videos that accompany the recipes are great. Many thanks

richardlimjr said...

Hi Chef John,

I tried this dish tonight and my sauce became lumpy right after adding the milk in.

I was wondering if I put the wrong amount of butter in.

I am from Singapore and I am not sure how much is 1 stick of butter. I google it and was told that it's 8 tablespoons. Should I get 1 cube of Butter and just throw the rest in after using 1st tablespoon?

Guess I found another way to screw this dish up.

Cheers
Richard

Chef John said...

yes, 1 stick is 8 tbsp. I wouldn't do it any different than the video shows. Sorry, not sure what happened.

richardlimjr said...

No worries Chef John ... Will attempt again tonight... will add more butter and less flour this time round.

Btw I made Onion Rings with your recipe and they were sooo good.

Thanks for the video and recipe.

Cheerio

Tracie said...

yum! just tried making this tonight since i had some baby spinach. it turned out perfect and super velvety!! i also threw in some left over diced bacon at the end too. thanks for the recipe chef john! its delicious!

David P. said...

Just tried it today. Added a little parm cheese. Came out PERFECT. I've tried several other recipes without success. My Wife and I absolutely loved it. Thank you SO MUCH.

Sawittri said...

Me and my family looooove it! So wonderful, creamy and delicious! We will be making this for our big family get together next week for Thanksgiving!! Triple the ingredients! Thank you SOO MUCH for teaching us how to cook this wonderful dish! :D

Sawittri said...

Me and my family looooove it! So wonderful, creamy and delicious! We will be making this for our big family get together next week for Thanksgiving!! Triple the ingredients! Thank you SOO MUCH for teaching us how to cook this wonderful dish! :D

Anonymous said...

Is it possible to make this dish ahead and reheat in the oven or microwave??

Anonymous said...

Is it possible to make this dish the night before and reheat via oven or microwave??

Chef John said...

Yes!

Anonymous said...

Thanks for the quick response!! I'm going to make it tonight for a dinner party I'm having after work tomorrow. Will be a huge time savor! Whepf!!

Anonymous said...

Can you tell me how many people this recipe serves? I plan to make it for a large group on thanksgiving. Thanks!

Chef John said...

about 4 to 6. enjoy!

Chef Basket said...

Thanks for the creamed spinach recipe. I think it could take perfect with steak.

Anonymous said...

OK, I'm not a huge cooked spinach fan. I've gone to friends houses and choked down a few bites of both regular and creamed spinach just to be polite.

Today I was having family members over for a prime rib dinner and knew they liked spinach, so I decided to try your recipe. I thought I'd put it in the toast points to make it palatable enough for me to eat with them. After a pretty big dusting of S & P an tasting it right out of the pan....

OH. MY. GOSH! Now I like creamed spinach.

Anonymous said...

Hello
Bringing this to Christmas dinner. Can you provide re-heat instructions --don't want to screw it up! Thanks!!

Chef John said...

It's best fresh made, but I'd heat covered in a microwave on a lower setting until warmed through.

André said...

Hi John,

some people say, frozen leaf spinach is much better than the fresh one, because it's quick-freezed just after the crop.

Do you think that's right?

Cheers!

Chef John said...

I like fresh better for this, but you should try both ways and then you can tell me! ;-)

André said...

Hi Chef John,

I actually did!

Well, in my opinion the taste is very similar. But there is a slight difference: I prefer the look and the "feeling in the mouth" of the fresh one.

So for special guests and ocasions, the fresh spinach is my favourite.

Anonymous said...

I have just recently found your site and I am going through your recipes. I have tried your recipe for the onion rings and for the buttermilk deep fried chicken. Both are fantastic. Now I would like to try the creamed spinach but
fresh spinach in my little town is very difficult to come by. How much of a 300g box of frozen chopped spinach would equal 24oz. of fresh spinach? Thank you. A new fan.

Chef John said...

Weight is weight, so you need 24 oz x 28.35 grams about 680.

sharon said...

What, exactly is that clove that you threw in with the onions? A clove of what?

Chef John said...

It's not a clove of something else, it's a "Clove" that's a kind of spice. (google for description)

Caz :) said...

I googled "cream spinach garlic parmesan" tonight for a recipe... and came across your vids/blog...

I've made my own recipe creamy spinach before and it was yum... but making this to your recipe... was TO DIE FOR! OMG YUM! Thank you so much, this will now be a staple in my recipe book :)

Love from New Zealand! :)

Guy said...

For the person who wanted to know how much butter is one stick they seem to come in one pound packages containing four sticks so that would be about 114 grams.

I found your site via youtube and google while eating roasted spinach I just cooked. I can't wait to try your recipe next, I think it will be a spicier version of my mother's creamed spinach.

NoRecipeRequired said...

Creamed spinach is probably my favorite side...I'm a little crushed when a steakhouse doesn't offer it.

I tried your's the other day, and it was great. I've got a version that omits garlic/onion - but adds some cheese give it a try: http://www.noreciperequired.com/recipe/creamed-spinach

Anonymous said...

Chef, chef.. Do you use whole milk or skimmed milk? (:

Chef John said...

Whole! Never use skim. :-)

Anonymous said...

Fantastic side dish. ty Chef John.
Here is how I solved 2 little problems someone else had too:
To avoid major lumping, remove the pan from the heat before you pour the cold milk, lumps will form anyway but you keep whisking fast and they will dissolve.
To reheat in a pan , on low ,just add a little bit of milk and keep stirring' it.

Everything said...

Hallo chef, I'm from Indonesia. I'm really glad i found u... First i watched your video through an app in my ipad..it's a good impression. Then watched several videos again then jumped to your website, read your profile... And found out that u are a great chef, no wonder your step by step video and the outcome is all great. And tonight i admire you more... I'm looking for this recipe quite long, asked my fellow chef but no one knows... So now, i know it and hopefully can cook it deliciously.. Thanks for all the sharing chef, may god bless you.

joseph said...

Hi cheft john

base on the recipe of the cream spinach, how many people you can serve, if i want to serve 10 people ,how much ingredient do I need ? do I just double the amount every thing of the recipe

joseph

Chef John said...

yes, I would double it. enjoy!

Araxjan said...

Do you think it would be possible/tasty to incorporate mushroom into this dish? My husband loves mushroom, and I was wondering if it's possible, and if so, how i would incorporate.

ChefJohnsBiggestFan said...

as much trouble as it took to make this it didn't turn out to be as delish as yours looks in video, I watched it 9 times.....mine was more like an elmer's glue sauce......and just took a long time from me hopping from grill outside (steaks) back to inside to stir while steaks went up in flames..sigh. I'm learning...

Anonymous said...

When you said put the spinach next to a window with a western exposure, what did you mean by that?? I live in NY and go back and forth a lot from NY to the Caribbean. So could you please tell me what you meant? I really love spinach and want to give this recipe a try. Looks great!

Chef John said...

that was a joke! :)

Anonymous said...

Oh..Sorry.. I'm a little slow. Lol. Thanks

Anonymous said...

Can I use 2% milk with this recipe?

Chef John said...

Yes!

Anonymous said...

As always, was eagerly preparing this recipe when - yikes - the milk was bad. But thanks to you I had .... creme fraiche. I plopped a generous spoonful onto the spinach/onion ... dusted it with flour to thicken ... and voila ...yummy creamed spinach. LOVE your recipes, thank you so , and keep them coming !!!!!!

Anonymous said...

Thanks for the recipe Chef. Trying it now with fresh picked spinich from my garden and serving it with smoked ribs... Yumm.

DyNo541 said...

You are fucking awesome.

That isn't a question...

billyrubinbrown said...

judging by some of the questions and comments, some of these people would be dangerous in the kitchen...

cookinmom said...

Do you think this would taste good with cooked kale instead???

cookinmom said...

Do you think this would taste good with cooked kale instead???

Chef John said...

I don't see why not! (btw, we have comment moderation, so you only need to submit the comment once. Thanks!

Patti said...

I typed it up for my own purposes. Feel free to use


CREMED SPINACH

Ingredients:
1 stick butter
24 ounces baby spinach
1/2 onion, finely diced
1 whole clove
4 cloves garlic, very finely minced
1/3 cup flour
1 1/2 cups milk
salt and pepper, to taste
large pinch of freshly ground nutmeg

Take 1 tablespoon of the butter and melt in very large pan.
Put the remainder of butter in a saucepan and leave to the side.
Add the spinach to your 1 tablespoon of butter and simmer until it wilts down (approximately 3 minutes)
As soon as it wilts down, QUICKLY put in a colander and let it drain away.
While it’s draining, melt the rest of butter and add in the onion and the single clove.
Once the onions are finished sautéing, remove the clove. It’s just for a hint of flavor.
Now add garlic and flour to make a roux. Cook for 2 or 3 minutes.
Remove from heat and gradually add in cold milk (starting with a quarter cup and then adding in the rest of the milk.)
Bring up to simmer on medium heat and then turn down to low and cook 10 minutes stirring occasionally.
Add salt and pepper and fresh ground nutmeg.
Coarsely chop the spinach and then add to your warmed sauce. As soon as it heats through, it’s ready to serve.

Holly Kujawski said...

I have never had creamed spinach before but since all of your recipes that I have tried before have been AWESOME, I decided to go ahead with this one. This was really good! Thanks for sharing!

mieosa said...

Hi.
I want to try this for Father's Day!

From where I live (Hong Kong), I can't seem to find any nutmeg.. will it taste different if I don't add it? or can I replace it with something else?

Much Thanks