Classic Spinach Salad – Retro Recipe

 

Classic Spinach Salad

In the 1950’s and 1960’s Classic Spinach Salad was very popular. Ingredients usually included fresh spinach leaves, sliced mushrooms, fried and crumbled bacon, chopped hard-boiled eggs and chopped red onions. Other ingredients might include chopped water chestnuts and bean sprouts. The salad was typically was topped with French Dressing. I  have adapted a recipe from an old cookbook for the recipe I’m sharing with you today.

A Few Words About Spinach

Spinach is a very healthy food – it’s nutritionally dense, which means there’s a lot of nutrition packed into each serving! Spinach is low in calories (41 calories per cup) and yet high in vitamins, minerals and other nutrients. The glycemic index for spinach is very low, which is important for people with diabetes.


This green leafy vegetable is an excellent source of Vitamin A, Vitamin K, magnesium, folate, manganese, iron, calcium, potassium, Vitamin E, zinc and selenium, just to name a few! Spinach is a good source of fiber also.

Spinach is readily available in most parts of the world today and it’s easy to grow in your garden or to find at your local grocery store or produce market. Spinach grows well in a temperate climate. The United States and the Netherlands are the largest commercial producers of spinach currently.

A very versatile vegetable, spinach may be eaten raw in a salad or added to a smoothie, or eaten cooked as a vegetable added to casseroles and soups.

Spinach is believed by some to have anti-inflammatory properties which may aid various inflammatory conditions such as arthritis, osteoporosis, migraine headaches and asthma. Eating green leafy vegetables may slow the age-related decline in brain function, which is definitely desirable for those of us in the Baby Boomer Generation!

Select spinach that has deep green leaves that are fresh and tender, not wilted or bruised. Don’t wash spinach before storing in the refrigerator as water encourages spoilage. Place fresh spinach in a plastic bag in the refrigerator. Spinach should be washed well before using and spun dry in a salad spinner if one is available.

Tasty Tip: Any time you make a salad, dry the leaves of the leafy greens you are using because salad dressing will not adhere to wet leaves. Remember oil and water don’t mix!

The Recipe

One of the best ways to eat green leafy vegetables is in the raw state as cooking may destroy some vitamins. One of the best ways to eat raw spinach is in Spinach Salad.  Classic Spinach Salad is easy to prepare and delicious, as well as healthy.

Classic Spinach Salad
Serves 6
A classic salad of spinach, mushrooms, bacon, hard-boiled eggs and red onions dressed with French dressing.
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Prep Time
15 min
Total Time
15 min
Prep Time
15 min
Total Time
15 min
Salad
  1. 1 lb. spinach, washed & dried
  2. 2 hard-boiled eggs, chopped
  3. 6 slices bacon, cooked crisp and crumbled
  4. 6 fresh mushrooms, sliced
  5. 1 cup red onion, chopped or sliced thinly
Dressing
  1. 1/3 cup catsup
  2. 2 teaspoons Worcestershire sauce
  3. 1/4 cup cider vinegar (or white wine vinegar)
  4. 2 tablespoons sugar
  5. 1/4 teaspoon salt
  6. 1 cup oil (olive oil is good)
Instructions
  1. Combine salad ingredients in a large bowl. Combine dressing ingredients except oil in a food processor (or blender) and process until well blended. With processor or blender running, pour oil slowly through feed tube. Just before serving pour half of the dressing over the salad and toss.
Notes
  1. I always have dressing leftover so I would advise starting with half of it, then adding more if needed. Leftover dressing will keep in the refrigerator for another salad.
  2. Optional ingredients: chopped water chestnuts and bean sprouts.
SILVER FOODIE http://www.silverfoodie.com/

Here’s a photo of mixing the dressing in the food processor:

The completed salad:

Parting Comments

When I have fresh spinach leftover I have dehydrated it with much success in our dehydrator. Dehydrated spinach stores well in a mason jar and can be used later in soups. Mushrooms also dehydrate well. If you have leftover mushrooms you need to use, check out my post on “Paprika: Flavoring or Garnish?” for my recipe for Paprika Chicken, one of my favorite chicken recipes.

Popeye had it right when he ate his spinach and became stronger – there are so many great nutrients in spinach! Try some today!

Remember to Savor the Flavor of Fresh Spinach!

Janet

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3 Steps to Perfect Hot Mushroom Turnovers

An Ideal Appetizer / Hors D’oeuvres

Hot Mushroom Turnovers are ideal savory appetizers or hors d’oeuvres for holiday parties and other social events.  A filling of minced mushrooms and onions mixed with sour cream and spiced with thyme are encased in a cream cheese pastry and baked until golden brown. Hot Mushroom Turnovers are half moon-shaped and look very attractive on a round serving platter and are really delicious served piping hot straight from the oven.  Easy to chew, these savory turnovers are appropriate for those with oral and dental problems.  

Hot Mushroom Turnovers also freeze well so they can be made ahead and frozen.  They can go straight from the freezer to the oven, with just some additional baking time.  

3 Steps to Preparing Flawless Hot Mushroom Turnovers

The goal to preparing these delicious turnovers is to make sure that all the mushroom-onion filling is sealed inside while they bake.  There are 3 ways to accomplish this goal:

First, spoon the mushroom mixture onto only one half of each circle of dough.

Next, brush some beaten egg around the edge of the turnover to help seal them when they are folded over. (A brush can be helpful to do this.)

Thirdly, fold the unfilled half of the circle over the filled half, then use a fork to firmly seal the edges together.

The Recipe

The Pastry:  Cream cheese, flour and butter are mixed together until smooth.


The mixture is shaped into a ball, wrapped in plastic wrap and refrigerated for 1 hour.

The Filling:  While the dough is chilling the filling can be prepared.  Butter is melted over medium heat in a 10″ skillet to which minced mushrooms and onions are added.

When the mushrooms and onions are tender, sour cream, salt, thyme and flour are stirred into the mixture.  Set aside.

Take the chilled dough out of the refrigerator.  Roll half of the dough to 1/8″ thickness on a floured surface.  Cut out as many circles as possible with a 2 3/4″ round cookie cutter.  (I use a glass to do this since I don’t have a cookie cutter this size and it works fine.)  Repeat with the remaining half of the dough.

Preheat the oven to 450 degrees F.  Place a teaspoon of the mushroom mixture on half of the dough circle.  Brush edges with egg and fold the dough over the filling.  With fork, firmly press edges together to seal; prick tops. Place turnovers on an ungreased baking sheet and brush with remaining egg.  Bake 12 – 14 minutes until golden brown.  

Below is the complete printable recipe:

Hot Mushroom Turnovers
Yields 3
Minced mushrooms and onions mixed with sour cream fill a cream cheese pastry for a great savory appetizer!
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Ingredients
  1. 1 8-oz. package Cream Cheese, softened
  2. 1 1/2 cups All-Purpose Flour
  3. 1/2 cup Butter, softened
  4. 1/2 pound Mushrooms, minced
  5. 1 large Onion, minced
  6. 3 tablespoons Butter
  7. 1/4 cup Sour Cream
  8. 1 teaspoon Salt
  9. 1/4 teaspoon Thyme Leaves
  10. 2 tablespoons All-Purpose Flour
  11. 1 Egg, beaten
Instructions
  1. About 2 hours before serving: In large bowl with mixer at medium speed, beat cream cheese, flour and butter until smooth. Shape into a ball, cover with plastic wrap and chill for 1 hour.
  2. In a 10" skillet over medium heat, in 3 tablespoons hot butter, cook mushrooms and onion until tender, stirring occasionally. Stir in sour cream, salt, thyme and 2 tablespoons flour; set aside.
  3. On floured surface with floured rolling pin, roll half of the dough 1/8" thick. With floured 2 3/4" inch round cookie cutter, cut out as many circles as possible. Repeat with other half of dough.
  4. Preheat oven to 450 degrees F. Onto one half of each dough circle, place a teaspoon of mushroom mixture. Brush edges of circles with some egg; fold dough over filling.
  5. With fork, firmly press edges together to seal; prick tops.
  6. Place turnovers on ungreased cookie sheet; brush with remaining egg.
  7. Bake 12 - 14 minutes until golden.
Notes
  1. If you don't have a 2 3/4" cookie cutter use a glass of the same size to cut out the circles of dough.
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Future posts will be featuring more holiday foods so come back soon for another visit!

Have a Happy and Blessed Thanksgiving and remember to Savor the Flavor!

Janet

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Paprika: Flavoring or Garnish?

Paprika is a wonderful spice made from the air-dried fruits of the chili pepper family.  Often associated with Hungarian cuisine, paprika can range from mild to hot on the heat index.  There’s also a smoked paprika that has a unique earthy flavor.  On the heat index paprika is usually considered … Continue reading →