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Make this delicious healthy dip and find out why Spinach truly should be one of your diet staples.
Samantha Saliba shares a failsafe recipe for this all year round vegetable. Bookmark this in your food folders people…
We are all familiar with the match made in heaven that is spinach & ricotta, which forms the creamy centre of traditional Maltese pies, ravioli and Italian cannelloni. If you’ve ever wished you could eat this filling by the jarful or spread it on your toast, then Samantha Saliba’s latest offering will be right up your street. Her version of a spinach and cheese dip is divine, it has a slightly smoky flavour with a walnut crunch and whether you are a spinach fan or not we think you will be hooked!
spotlight on spinach
From day one we are told to eat more greens, especially the darker leafy variety which has become a buzz phrase in the wellness world; think kale, arugula, mustard greens, swiss chard, collard greens, bok choy, romaine lettuce and spinach. All for good reason though, as the rich green colour signifies a high nutrient profile and numerous health benefits. Here are three reasons GITH loves spinach:
- Source of iron: no spinach blog is complete without a Popeye anecdote, and it’s true that spinach is a good source of iron but there are ways to maximise its absorption. Firstly lightly cook spinach to reduce oxalic acid which blocks iron absorption. Secondly, add a squeeze of lemon to your spinach dish for vitamin C, this enhances absorption of non-heme iron as found in plants.
- Tops the chlorophyll table: the dark leaves are loaded with the green pigment chlorophyll, which if you remember back to science classes is the key player in plant photosynthesis. Chlorophyll is also beneficial for humans, it has anti-inflammatory properties, supports detoxification and increases red blood cell production.
- Bursting with beta-carotene: we usually associate beta-carotene with orange and yellow vegetables, however, spinach is also an excellent source (the orange-yellow pigment is masked by the green chlorophyll). Beta-carotene is the precursor to vitamin A, critical for healthy vision and immunity. Cooking actually enhances beta-carotene absorption from spinach so it’s beneficial to sauté this leafy green.
'There are so many fun and versatile ways to enjoy our greens. Spinach can be found either as smooth leaves or crinkly with a large or a small leaf. So as you can see, even spinach exists in many shapes and sizes! This recipe is certainly not a fussy one, you can use any type of spinach but I would recommend you to use fresh rather than frozen. The consistency tends to provide a smoother dip with less stringy parts. This spinach recipe is a perfect appetizer which can be used as a spread on bread or crackers or as a dip with crudités. Dip away!' Samantha Saliba
spring spinach dip recipe
- 1tbsp butter
- 250-300g fresh spinach, trimmed and chopped into very thin pieces
- 2 tbsp green onion, chopped
- 1 tbsp green garlic, chopped
- ½ tsp smoked paprika
- ¼ tsp salt
- 1 tbsp milk (or plant milk such as unsweetened soy, hemp or almond)
- 60g walnuts roughly chopped
- 220g cream cheese
how To Make
- Melt butter in a pan on medium heat and sauté the green onion and green garlic for about 2 minutes.
- Add in the spinach, walnuts, smoked paprika and salt and sauté and continue to toss until spinach has wilted.
- Remove from heat and let spinach to cool.
- Optional – pulse momentarily in a blender to receive a smoother consistency.
- In the meantime beat the cream cheese and milk in a large bowl. Once cooled off, add the spinach mixture and mix it all together.
- Refrigerate and serve cold with some bread, crackers or crudités.
Are you passionate about cooking and have a recipe you would like to share, then say hello at teamGITH@gmail.com.