Saturday, November 8, 2008

Spinach Madeline

Thanksgiving isn't Thanksgiving without this staple in our family. I hear that some families have green bean casserole; I think I could count on one hand the number of times I've even eaten it! So I guess you could say this is our version of the green bean casserole classic.

2 - 16 ounce (32 ounces total) packaged frozen chopped spinach
8 Tablespoons margerine or butter
4 Tablespoons flour
1 cup (8 ounce) evaporated milk
1 cup vegetable liquor
1 teaspoon black pepper
1 1/2 teaspoon celery salt
1 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
1 teaspoon salt
1 (12 ounce) roll Jalapeno cheese* (or another spicy version of cheese), cut into small pieces
2 teaspoons Worcestershire sauce
Red pepper to taste
1 roll Ritz crackers for topping (optional)
1 stick butter or margerine for topping (optional)

  1. Cook spinach according to directions on package.

  2. Drain and reserve vegetable liquor.

  3. Melt margerine or butter in saucepan over low heat.

  4. Add flour, thinning until blended and smooth, but not brown.

  5. Add onion and cook until soft, but not brown.

  6. Add evaporated milk and liquor slowly, stirring constantly to avoid lumps.

  7. Cook until smooth and thick; continue stirring throughout.

  8. Add seasonings and cheese; stir until melted.

  9. Combine with cooked spinach.

  10. This may be served immediately or put into a casserole and top with buttered bread crumbs.

  11. The flavor is improved if the batter is done and kept in the fridge overnight.

  12. Serves 10-12.
*Mom almost assaulted the guy at Kroger when he said Kraft no longer makes the rolls of Jalapeno cheese. We have neighbors who wrote and called the Kraft company in protest. Now I use pepper jack cheese, but it doesn't come in 12 ounce packages - usually it's either 8 ounce or 16 ounce. I usually buy the 16 ounce and have just a little left over for scrambled eggs later. It depends how much you like spicy: I bet you could even do just regular swiss or mozzarella and optionally add jalapenos on your own.

Even better than buttered bread crumbs, I like to do Mom's version: take one roll of Ritz crackers, mash them up with my hands while they're still in the tube, melt 1 stick of butter or margerine in a bowl, and stir in the Ritz. Makes the best topping ever!


Katy Agnew said...

As of a few months ago, Brookshires still carried the tube of jalapeno cheese. Check there...


Made by Lena