From the Farm – Rosy Smit, Culinary Gardener

Spinach is part of the Goosefoot family of plants, which includes beets, swiss chard, amaranth and quinoa.   In the Camp Korey garden, we grow different varieties of spinach, some flat-leafed and some savoy-leafed and always in the cool spring and fall seasons as it doesn’t like to grow in hot summer weather.  Our campers will find it as baby leaves in their salads, or cooked and incorporated into other dishes. Spinach is a very nutritious green and is an excellent source of iron and folic acid.  It is compact enough to grow it in a pot or container in small spaces, just remember to keep it well watered.

To the Table – Executive Chef Tana Mielke

Spinach has had quite a life, as well as some fame. It has been a staple in the Middle Eastern and Mediterranean diets for centuries, eventually making its way across Europe and to America. Gastronomically, it continues to evolve. Creamed spinach is one of the most classic steakhouse staples. Remember the warm spinach salad of the 70’s full of sizzling hot, fatty bacon? In the 80’s, the craze was spinach dip in bread bowls, which became spinach-artichoke dip in the 90’s. The spinach-strawberry-walnut salads that seemed to be everywhere in the early 2000’s. The real beginning was in 1929 with Popeye! Popeye’s use of superfood spinach gave him his boundless strength, which helped him win the heart of Olive Oyl.  The one-third increase in spinach consumption by Americans was attributed to this story line.

Well… here at camp, our campers also reap the benefits of nutrient-rich SUPER spinach. Rosy grows a couple different varieties and we use it everywhere. Raw, in sauces and dressings, sautéed with garlic and in one of our camp favorites, Greek pie, Spanakopita!

The mother of one of my best friends, Mixalis, gave me my first lesson in this yummy Greek staple when I was living in Greece. It has evolved a lot and I often change it based on which produce I have available… but this is one my favorite renditions. Get your camper in there to help you, and then enjoy your Spanakopita for breakfast, lunch, snack or dinner.

Recipes to Share