Pieces of delicious green fluffiness. This souffle is a bit like a quiche without the base and is perfect for the whole family. It can be cut into small cubes for younger children and babies who’ve already been introduced to eggs. Today for lunch we all ate it alongside cold meats and salad. It’s also great with a bbq or eaten cold at a picnic.
I love the fact this recipe comes from a lady who knows just as much about getting children to eat greens as she does about hosting ambassadorial dinners. An American diplomat, she was sent to Rome from Washington in the 1960s. A transatlantic voyage spent on the ship’s dance floor and the start of a five decade journey into the heart of Italian life. She married an Italian senator turned EU ambassador, brought up two children, and whilst juggling family life, launched her career as a high profile journalist and author. When I worked in Italy, she was often an invaluable font of knowledge, and now I’m learning a thing or two from her culinary expertise and impressive ability to use all the leftovers in her fridge!
Preparation time – 15 minutes
Cooking time – 40 minutes
Ingredients (you’ll need a food processor or hand held blender)
spinach – 500g (or swiss chard) cooked and squeezed till dry
flour – 1 tablespoon
ricotta cheese – 500g (2 tubs)
1/2 onion diced
grated cheese – 1 cup. (mixture of parmesan and cheddar)
salt and pepper
nutmeg – a pinch
1. Preheat oven to 180 C (fan assisted). Then butter a baking dish or non stick roasting pan (I used 12” x 9” but bit smaller would be fine too ) Sprinkle greased dish with flour and breadcrumbs. Semolina also works well instead of breadcrumbs
2. Using a large saucepan over a medium/high heat, fry the chopped onion in olive oil until soft but not browned. Then add spinach and a tablespoon of water and put lid on pan. Cook spinach for 5 mins or until soft.
3. Drain spinach mixture really well using a sieve and the back of spoon to help push out excess water. You can keep the spinach water to make soup or gravy. But if you’re not inspired by a jug of water that looks like pond slime, feel free to discard. I did!
4. Put eggs, ricotta, parmesan and cheddar cheese, flour, and seasoning in a big mixing bowl. Dump spinach on top and zap with blender. It’s the colour of mint icecream by this point. Pour into baking dish, sprinkle more breadcrumbs or semolina on top, drizzle with olive oil and bake for 35-40 mins. Top should be golden and cracking slightly.