This is one juicy snack! It can also work as a lunch or appetizer. The tomato acts as a moisture-rich “bun” and the wilted green leaves, sautéed with garlic and olive oil, acts as the filling. It’s exceptionally light and has bold flavors from the garlic, feta, and balsamic vinegar. The tomato balances it all. Enjoy!
Sautéed garlic and spinach atop toasted bread makes for a lovely combination. You get the creaminess of butter-wilted spinach and the chewiness of your favorite bread all in one. One very important point when it comes to greens is to rotate them. Overeating any one green can actually be detrimental to your health, since all green leaves contain toxic substances in order to prevent predation. Therefore, overloading on one can cause a build up of that green’s specific toxin. Rotating avoids that from ever happening.
Spinach contains oxalic acid, which prevents the absorption of iron and calcium. Overconsuming spinach can increase the risk for kidney stones. In addition to rotating between spinach and other greens, which makes all these toxins completely harmless, cooking spinach helps to break down the oxalic acid, which stops it from affecting the absorption of iron and calcium.
Didn’t think spinach could be harmful, eh? Well, too much of a good thing…la dee da.
Nevertheless, spinach is a nutrition powerhouse and truly glows.
Spinach: provides 20% of the recommended daily allowance of dietary fiber in just one cup, prevents cancer with flavonoids, has anti-inflammatory property, prevents osteoporosis, atherosclerosis and high blood pressure, protects the eyes from cataracts with lutein and zeaxanthin, provides 337% of the recommended daily allowance of vitamin A and 1000% of vitamin K, promotes healthy skin, and strengthens bones, the brain and nervous function. The implications of all its vitamins, nutrients and minerals on the human body are virtually endless.
Sauteed Garlic Spinach on Bread
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Ingredients (2 servings)
- 2 cups of tightly packed spinach
- 3 cloves garlic, slivered
- 1 tbsp of butter
- Dash of salt and pepper
- 1 teaspoon of butter per slice of bread
- 1/4 cup Parmesan cheese for garnish
Begin by removing the stems of the spinach and washing with cold water thoroughly. Slice the garlic into slivers.
In a saucepan, melt the butter on medium heat with the garlic. Cook the garlic to release the aromas for about 30 seconds. You don’t want to burn the butter.
Add the spinach, salt and pepper. Cook until wilted. The volume will reduce dramatically.
Toast slices of your favorite bread. I used whole-wheat.
Slab a teaspoon of butter on each slice (optional) and top with the wilted spinach.
Sprinkle with parmesan cheese.
With the weather getting colder, I’ve been all about the soups.
Raw (but warmed) tomato soup:
But the outdoor dining and Bosphorus views are still in the cards:
It’s rare I come across anything remotely ethnic in Istanbul, so seeing Wakame was quite the surprise. I adore seaweed, but it has to be paired with a dressing that cuts the “fish” or, well, “sea” taste, or else its a bit overwhelming for me. Seaweed weighs the salad down, but not in a bad way; in fact, in a very, very good way. Something as simple as this recipe is filling enough for a meal.
Spinach & Seaweed Salad w/Tahini Glaze Dressing
1/2 cup dried Wakame seaweed, soaked in 1 cup of filtered lukewarm water
1/4 cup tahini
1 tbsp soy sauce
1 tbsp honey
Soak the Wakame in water. 1:2 ratio.
In less than 5 minutes, it will soften up and be ready to drain, then eat!
For the dressing, combine the tahini, soy sauce, and honey.
Toss together the components of the salad.
Voila! So easy, so delicious! The seaweed gives the salad some bulk, filling you up with protein and essential fats while the tahini glaze provides a creamy twist. You barely realize spinach is a main player. Light, healthy, but oh-so-satisfying!!
Chomp chomp chomp….bowl licked clean in less than 5 minutes.
I was in a hurry this evening, so in the event of an emergency hungry tummy, I did the stop, drop and roll.
I stopped to look at what I had on hand: olive tapenade, some sun-dried tomatoes soaked in olive oil, fresh tomatoes, scallions, cucumbers and greens. And I simply took the washed leaves, dropped on the goods, rolled ‘em up, and nom nom nom’ed my way to satiation. Then flew out the door.
You know you’re in Turkey when…
…that happens. How red and juicy and sweet and amazing is that!? I am not one to bite into a tomato as if it were an apple, but this guy was unreal.
In other news, here is a salad using none other than the cultured red cabbage I made last week.
Complete with tomatoes, avocado, spinach, lime salt, olive oil and lemon juice.
Another week of noshing wrapped up.
Have a wonderful weekend !
Mine involves a music festival, some researching/writing for work , a massage , and some overdue beach attire shopping .