It’s finally April! I miss being outdoors, so I really appreciate this time of year. Did you know that April is Earth Month? It began in the seventies, where one day in April was devoted to Earth Day. Now, we’ve got an entire month dedicated to raising awareness for environmental issues. I’m all about food and recipes here, but food is a huge topic affecting our environment.
We all eat…so, how we get our food and what we are eating has an enormous impact on the environment. There are some things we can do to help make a difference. Buy locally grown produce, or grow your own to provide more nutrient dense food for you and reduce carbon emissions needed to transport to our grocery stores. Reduce the amount of meat you eat to also reduce emissions. The meat industry is responsible for twenty percent of the world’s greenhouse gas emissions. Compost your food waste into nutrient rich soil to use in your garden. One-third of food produced for consumption is thrown away every year. These may seem insignificant to you, but if we all made small changes, we could make a lasting difference together.
You’re probably asking what creamed spinach has to do with any of this. Since eating locally grown produce is so important, I thought something seasonal would be a perfect fit. This dish is will make everyone happy. It’s a light take on traditional creamed spinach with a few twists. I’ve replaced the heavy cream with Silk Unsweetened Original Almond Milk. It’s a plant-based option that’s dramatically lower in calories, fat and has no cholesterol. I also use a bit of whole wheat panko for crunch and crumbles of feta cheese on top. The feta adds a nice creamy and salty bite, but can easily be omitted to keep this vegan.
- 3 tablespoons olive oil, divided (2½ tablespoons + ½ tablespoon)
- 3 tablespoons finely minced onion
- 3 cloves garlic, minced
- 20 ounces fresh baby spinach
- 3 tablespoons all purpose flour
- 2 cups unsweetened almond milk
- pinch of nutmeg
- 4 ounces crumbled feta cheese, divided (2 ounces + 2 ounces) (omit for vegans)
- ½ teaspoon kosher salt
- ¼ cup whole wheat panko
- Preheat your oven to 375 degrees. Grease a baking dish lightly with olive oil.
- In a very large pan or wok (I use a wok), heat 2½ tablespoons of olive oil over medium heat. Add the onion and sauté for about 3 minutes. Add the garlic and continue to cook for one minute. Add the spinach toss as you cook it down for about 4 to 5 minutes.
- Place a heat resistant colander in the sink, and transfer the spinach into the colander to allow it to drain a bit.
- Place the remaining ½ tablespoon of olive oil into the empty wok or pan. Add the flour and stir it into the oil. It will be a bit thick. Cook for a minute, then add the almond milk and whisk until you get a smooth texture. Simmer until the sauce thickens, about 3 minutes. Return the spinach to the pan and mix until combined. Add half of the feta cheese, if using, and mix.
- Pour the spinach mixture into the prepared pan. In a small bowl, combine the panko with the remaining olive oil. With your fingers, just work the oil into the panko to combine, then add in the remaining feta cheese. Sprinkle over top of the spinach.
- Bake for 15 to 20 minutes.
Inspired by Almond Milk Creamed Spinach, Food & Wine
This is a sponsored conversation written by me on behalf of Silk. The opinions and text are all mine.