Friday, January 11, 2008

Umm, (Spinach) Pie...

Young E was K's best friend when he was two, mostly because they got to egg each other onto all kinds of mischief at school. E's mom Suzanne, was famous for her Spinach pie - and I remember the kids wolfing it down at a school party. Suzanne was sweet enough to share the recipe with me. But, in the long tradition of women in my family, I admit I tinkered with the recipe from day one and - dare I say?- made it my own. Suzanne, if you're reading this, could you add your original recipe and commentary to this post?
Here's my version.

Ingredients:
One medium sized egg
One egg white
One cup Bisquick
Half a cup of cheese (I think Suzanne's original recipe called for Parmesan, but I've been equally successful with Cheddar, and more pungent flavors like Gruyere with great results)
Half a cup of oil (Vegetable oil, in Suzanne's case. I've preferred melted butter, but also have used olive oil for a truly fragrant dish)
One pack of frozen spinach (approx. 10 oz) OR about two cups of any diced, crunchy vegetable. I've worked with peas, beans and carrots to good effect!
Pepper to taste (a pinch should do)


  • Preheat your oven to 375°. My little Black and Decker toaster oven has been a whiz to bake with, and I don't often bother with my larger stove-top oven
  • Start defrosting the spinach. Once defrosted, drain the excess water
  • Try and use a bake-safe glass bowl or casserole dish - a 5" or 6" dish should do, though it should be around 3" deep, since the pie will rise. I try to be as economical as possible in the use of dishes, since I'm obsessed with conserving water AND about being good to my husband and brother-in-law, who are the designated dish-washers at our home!
  • Get the kids to participate: They'll have a blast learning how to separate the egg yolk from the white, and then beating the ingredients together
  • Beat the egg and egg white well. Once the eggs are a little frothy, mix in the oil/butter and then fold in the Bisquick. Make sure it isn't too lumpy
  • Fold in the cheese and spinach and stir well to make sure the spinach and cheese are evenly distributed
  • Pop in the oven and bake for around 25 minutes, till you get a nice golden crust. Test at the center of the dish with a fork to make sure it's fully cooked

The pie is a favorite school lunch for the kids, since it's yummy, neat and easy to handle. I'm happy because it gets them spinach in all it's glory, and I hardly ever have leftovers! Also, the prep time is less than 10 minutes, so you can read, put your feet up or run around with the kids while the pie bakes!

Some caveats:
- If you're going with olive oil, then stick to one of the simpler cheeses so that the flavors don't overpower each other
- D&K are very active kids who are into swimming, karate and dance. If you're worried about about weight gain, I'd skip this recipe OR make it a rare treat. The chicken with spinach dish may be a better way to get some greens in the diet
- I don't often have the issue of having to reheat the pie (it disappears....) If you've had to refrigerate leftovers, take them out and let them get to room temperature before a quick reheat, since the pie tends to get a little mushy if reheated for too long

1 comment:

rv said...

Hi Roopa,
I read most of your blog posts and I definitly enjoyed it especially the "flavored water" section and the spinach pie, thats the first time i came across such a dish :) ....do add photos with a larger size that makes them feel so yummy that people just want to grab a bite out of their computer's monitor;) ...by the way my name is also Roopa :) Nice meeting someone with same name:) Good luck and happy blogging , hope you had a good valentine's day :) Hey one more thing, do join the blog group of "Queen of Leftovers" . You can see that section in my blog, you get a chance to interact with other bloggers in that group too :)