Get Everyone to eat Their Greens With This Simple and Delicious Recipe for Creamed Spinach from Executive Chef T.J. Saunders

With our retail center – Chef Supplies by KaTom – nearing completion, we were thrilled to welcome in Executive Chef T.J. Saunders to christen our residential demonstration kitchen. To the delight of members of the Leadership Sevier class of 2013, T.J. created some perfectly-cooked prime and choice steaks that gave his willing taste-testers a chance to experience the difference between those two cuts. A few of us on the staff found reasons to sneak into the demonstration kitchen for a taste and we can vouch that there’s a huge difference (for those who don’t know, prime is the highest grade with lots of fat marbling, choice is next on the list, and select is at the bottom of what you’re most likely to see). Of course, with Executive Chef Saunders cooking, it was all delicious.

Cooking at Chef Supplies by KaTom

Though the steaks were incredible, the real star of the show may have been T.J.’s creamed spinach recipe, which he also demonstrated for the crowd. It’s a wonderfully creamy and rich creation that we justified to ourselves with a mental argument that the full cream he used is still balanced out by the healthy spinach. If Popeye had this recipe for creamed spinach, he almost certainly would eat even more spinach than ever before, but he might also be as big around as Bluto.

More importantly, if you’re looking for a way to get kids to eat their spinach or to make greens more palatable for finicky adults, this is a great way to do it. And, you can help avoid a body by Bluto simply by switching to milk or half and half, as we’ve written it below, in this recipe for creamed spinach.

We’ll keep you updated on the progress of our showroom and look forward to welcoming you in there soon! For now, check out some pictures of Chef Supplies by KaTom.

bowl of creamed spinachIngredients

  • 1 stick plus 2 tbsp. salted butter
  • 1/4 cup all-purpose flour
  • 2 cups milk or half & half
  • 2 tbsp. chopped onion
  • 1 dime-sized bay leaf
  • 1/4 tsp. salt
  • 1 lb. fresh spinach, cleaned and stemmed
  • Salt and freshly ground pepper to taste

Preparation Directions

Process for creating Béchamel sauce:
In a small saucepan, melt butter over medium heat until foamy. Add flour and stir until light brown in color.

Add onion and seasonings (bay leaf and 1/4 tsp. salt), then whisk in milk, stirring until the mixture comes to a boil and thickens.

Reduce the heat and cook for five minutes, then pass through a fine strainer and reserve. The sauce will be very thick.

Process for preparing spinach:
Cook spinach immersed in boiling water for one minute. Remove and refresh in ice water.

Squeeze it until it is very dry and then purée it in a food processor. Set aside.

Just before serving, combine the sauce with the puréed spinach and cook on low heat, stirring often, for about 5 minutes. Season to taste with salt and freshly ground black pepper. Finish by stirring in 2 tbsp. of soft butter.

Chelsea B. Sanz
Chelsea B. Sanz

Chelsea Sanz has lived in East Tennessee since her family moved here from South Florida just before she started high school. While she initially begrudged her new home state, she eventually realized she had come to not only love it, but to “bleed orange” as University of Tennessee Volunteers fans here like to say. She and her boyfriend Hunter, a trail worker for Great Smoky Mountains National Park, enjoy exploring the nation’s most visited national park and coming up with their own farm-to-table recipes.

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