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Spinach is an edible flowering plant in the family of amaranth. It is native to central and southwestern Asia. In 1533, Catherine de'Medici became queen of France; she so fancied spinach that she insisted it be served at every meal. To this day, dishes made with spinach are known as "Florentine" because Catherine came from Florence, Italy. Spinach, along with other green leafy vegetables, is considered to be a rich source of iron. It was even used to fortify wine given to French soldiers weakened by hemorrhage.

Lemon Spinach Chick Peas


  • 1 10-ounce bag fresh spinach, washed
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • juice of 1 lemon
  • 1 15-ounce can chickpeas
  • 1 bag pita bread

Heat the oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add the chickpeas and cook about 2 minutes. Add the spinach in batches, stirring until just wilted. Sprinkle the salt and lemon juice over the spinach mixture and stir once more. Serve warm with toasted pita.

Sauteed Mustard Greens with Garlic Scapes


  • 3 large garlic scapes, minced
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 1 lb mustard greens (1 bunch), stems and center ribs discarded and leaves halved
  • 1/2 cup water

Mash garlic scapes to a paste with‚ teaspoon salt. Heat oil in a 5-quart pot over moderately high heat until hot and sauté garlic paste until fragrant. Add half of greens and toss with tongs to coat with oil, adding remaining half as greens wilt. Add water and cook, covered, stirring occasionally, 5 minutes. Continue to cook, uncovered, until greens are just tender and most of liquid is evaporated. Season with additional salt.

Editor's note: I will accept blame for finding and including the cat & spinach video 

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