This is our take on spinach Madeleine, a beloved Louisiana side dish that first appeared in the Junior League of Baton Rouge’s cookbook River Road Recipes.
Makes 4-6 servings
- 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
- ¾ cup panko (Japanese bread crumbs)
- Pinch kosher salt
- 3 (10-ounce) packages frozen chopped spinach
- ¼ cup unsalted butter
- 6 tablespoons chopped sweet onion
- 3 cloves garlic, minced
- ¼ cup all-purpose flour
- ¾ cup half-and-half
- 6 ounces processed cheese product*, cubed
- 1 small jalapeño, seeded and diced (about 1 tablespoon)
- 1½ teaspoons Creole seasoning*
- 1½ teaspoons Worcestershire sauce
- ½ teaspoon hot sauce*
- In a small skillet, heat oil over medium heat. Add bread crumbs and salt; cook, stirring frequently, until lightly browned, 3 to 4 minutes. Set aside.
- Prepare spinach according to package directions. Place cooked spinach in a colander over a bowl, and press to drain thoroughly. Reserve ½ cup drained spinach juices. Set aside.
- In a large Dutch oven, melt butter over medium heat. Add onion and garlic; cook, stirring occasionally, for 1 minute. Sprinkle flour over onion mixture; cook, stirring constantly, for 2 minutes. Reduce heat to low, and stir in reserved spinach juices and half-and-half. Cook, stirring frequently, until thickened, about 2 minutes. Add cheese product, jalapeño, Creole seasoning, Worcestershire, and hot sauce, stirring until cheese is melted and smooth. Stir in drained spinach, and cook just until heated through, 1 to 2 minutes. Transfer to a serving dish. Top with toasted bread crumbs just before serving.
*We used Velveeta, Tony Chachere’s Original Creole Seasoning, and Crystal Hot Sauce.