The remains of the day….Excellent leftovers, with several great ways to be re-purposed.
Spinach Madeline is one of the most famous recipes to come out of the classic community cookbook, River Road Recipes, from Baton Rouge, Louisiana.
According to the Junior League of Baton Rouge, this cookbook is in it’s 70th printing, and is still available across the country in bookstores. Yes, I’ve looked, and found it!
Spinach Madeline is a staple at holiday dinners across the Louisiana, the Gulf Coast, and sprinkled around the world by Louisiana transplants.
I don’t know if it’s true, but it seems a likely basis for the ubiquitous Spinach and Artichoke Dip (made famous by Houston’s restaurant.) And yes, Spinach Madeline came first.
I actually never had Spinach Madeline until I started working in catering in Lafayette (even though we always had the cookbook.)
And the chef there did not follow that particular recipe, but, rather, put a Lafayette spin on it. Instead of the Jalapeno Cheese roll (which is hard to find these days), he used cream cheese and relied on nacho jalapenos for the spicy kick. Jalapeno Tabasco also does the trick perfectly.
The result is more like creamed spinach with a bite!
This freezes well, before or after cooking, which is why I like to make such.
I like to freeze the leftovers in small batches, because it’s amazing how many ways the leftovers can be utilized: omelets; spinach enchiladas; added to a pasta dish or casserole; serve on buttered toast; add a little more cheese and artichokes, toss into a crock pot, and you have Spinach and Artichoke Dip (an almost instant appetizer!)
Try Spinach Madeline, which is great, or my Spinach Lafayette; I think you’d be happy with both.
For 20 people. You will need two 9 x 13 pans, or one really large casserole:
9 to 10 10-oz boxes frozen, chopped spinach, thawed overnight
4 to 8 tablespoons butter
2 medium onions, minced
1/2 medium red bell pepper, finely chopped
2 celery sticks, chopped fine
2 cloves garlic, minced
2 8-ounce boxes cream cheese
8 ounce pasteurized cheese, cut in cubes
2 teaspoons salt
1/2 teaspoon cajun seasoning
1/4 cup minced pickled jalapenos (nacho jalapenos)
2-3 cup shredded cheese, any good melting cheese