Thursday, April 11, 2013

Warm Spinach Salad

Back home (in California) there was one restaurant that I pretty much survived off of in college. The Fish Market, Del Mar location to be exact! It might have been the fact that my then BF, high school sweetheart turned college sweetheart manned the Oyster Bar. Or that one of my best friends was waitress there. {you know highlllllly discounted meals, and free drinks!} Or it might not have been..... Because the food was just dang good! Fresh seafood, and perfect location! It was right by the racetrack, 5 minutes from the beach, and 10 mins from campus or our apartment.

If you forced to me to pick a favorite item it would have to be the warm spinach salad. Hands down. I am not even exaggerating when I tell you I probably ate one 3-5 times a week junior and senior year of college! I used to make them at home all the time, having your (then) guy know the recipe & make it all the time for customers, it was super easy for me to learn - i had him teach me. And since it was super easy to make I could go it on my own whenever he wasn't around, or I wasn't at the restaurant. Or as it is now, when I don't live anywhere near a location.

Last night while trying to figure out what side to have with the salmon we picked up, this jumped into my head. And dammmnnnnnnn it's been way too long since I've had or made this salad. And I can tell you confidently I'll be eating them in high rotation going forward.

What you need:
1/4-1/2 Red Onion - sliced // 2-4 cloves Garlic - chopped // Kalamata Olives (pitted) - I like mine whole, but a rough chop would work too // Feta Cheese // Balsamic Oil // EVOO // Big handful of spinach  {the mise en place above was for two salads, but olives for just me :) }

To Cook - I cook one serving at a time, but you can easily prep one big one for two servings:
Heat up a medium size saute pan over medium heat.
Once heated, add small drizzle of olive oil around pan.
Give it a minute or two, and then drop in a bunch of garlic and red onions. And saute until the onion just start to soften, stirring regularly.
Then add the balsamic (I don't know an exact about - maybe 4-5 tablespoons. You want to almost cover 3/4 of the bottom of the saute pan, but not quite).
Let it start warming up, stir everything around, and when the outer bits of balsamic start to get a little bubbly, toss in the feta (however much you like!) and the olives.
The balsamic will still be runny, but starting to reduce slightly.
Keep heating everything a bit longer. The onions should be soft and the balsamic should smell delish! Once it reduces just a touch more, turn off the heat and toss in a big handful of spinach.
Toss the spinach in the warm goodness and serve. The spinach will start to wilt with the heat of the sauce, so be sure to add a bunch - more than you would for a raw spinach salad.

The cooking process will probably only take you ~5 minutes. It's such a quick and easy dish!


  1. I had a version of this last night, but yours looks much better! Mmm.

    1. it's BEYOND delish!! The pictures are great, since i made it at night and it was dark out. It is by far one of my favorite sides!

  2. I always get this when I'm out to eat, but I've never made it on my own for some reason. Yum!

  3. I LOVE warm spinach salads -- this one sounds so delicious!
    xo Josie

  4. YUM! I love spinach and I love olives. Thanks for sharing!

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  6. That actually makes me want to cook! Haha!

  7. how did I miss this?!!! I need to make looks AMAZE!!!


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