Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Herbed Spinach Balls

Arguably the biggest week of cooking (and eating) has arrived in full force! Are you ready for the big feast? With just three so far confirmed for dinner, I'm focusing my efforts on perfecting side dishes that I hope will become family tradition for years to come. True to Dressing on the Side form, I'm also focusing on transforming the classics into whole food ingredients and using a few tips and tricks around the kitchen to have the meal done in just about an hour.  Be sure to check back this week and next to see what I've come up with (or do the most simplest thing of all and become a follower!!). 

These delicious looking morsels pictured above are the perfect snack or appetizer to have on hand this holiday season. They're packed with veggies so they literally won't weigh you down or make you feel guilty about a little pre-dinner indulging. Let's get real, that first glass of wine needs a friend, too! They travel well, can be made in advance and can be enjoyed warm or at room temperature. Double the batch to keep some snacks on hand or to toss with olive oil, garlic and pasta for a quick weeknight meal.

Herbed Spinach Balls (makes about two dozen)
  • two boxes chopped, frozen spinach--cooked in the microwave and drained well
  • small onion,diced
  • 4 cloves garlic, grated
  • 1/2 cup parmesan cheese
  • 4 eggs
  • 2 cups herbed stuffing mix (preferably pepridge farms)
  • salt and pepper to taste 
  • pinch (1/8 to 1/4 tsp) crushed red pepper *optional for a little kick
Preheat your oven to 350. 

In a large microwave safe bowl, cook the spinach about three minutes, stopping once midway through to break it up as it defrosts. Once all defrosted, turn out spinach onto a clean dishtowel and wring out over the sink. You'll be shocked at the amount of liquid--I was!.

In a large bowl combine spinach, onion, salt and pepper, garlic, eggs and stuffing mix (and red pepper if you're opting in!). Mix until well combined. Using your hands, form balls from 1 to 1 1/2 tablespoons of spinach mixture. Place the balls on an ungreased baking sheet. --I fit 20 balls on a large baking sheet. They won't expand so you don't need to leave room like you would for baked goods..about an inch apart is acceptable. 

Bake about 20-25 minutes until golden brown. Keeps about 2-3 days covered in the fridge.

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