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.
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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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