Holiday Food: Spinach Maria!

Well, it’s that time of year again. The christmas music is playing in every store you enter, the black friday adds are rolling out everywhere, and it’s starting to feel like winter! Oh, and did I mention it’s about time for all the AWESOME holiday meals? The ones where you need to do eating work out routines just to eat it all…..eat….nap….eat…move around…watch football…nap…eat. It continues all day! So what better way to celebrate then by creating an awesome dish that everyone will love? This spinach maria recipe is sure to please even those who hate green stuff ( lookin at you kids! ). It comes from the people at Calhoun’s here in knoxville, Tn.

Ingredients:

  • 5 (3 1/3 ounce) packages frozen chopped spinach
  • 1 1/2 cups milk
  • 1/3 teaspoon dry mustard
  • 1/3 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
  • 1/4 medium yellow onion, chopped
  • 1/3 tablespoon butter
  • 1 2/3 tablespoons melted butter
  • 2 tablespoons flour
  • 2 2/3 ounces Velveeta cheese cut into cubes
  • 2 2/3 ounces cheddar cheese cut into cubes
  • 1 1/3 ounces monterey jack cheese (I used fontina though) cut into cubes
  • Additional cheese for topping.

Method:

First thaw your spinach and squeeze as much excess water from it as possible. Then cut all the cheese into small cubes. Start sauteing onion in the butter in a small saucepan while you bring the milk and spices to a simmer in another large pot. While doing that, combine the MELTED butter and flour in another saucepan and cook on low heat for 2-3 minutes. Add this to the milk mixture and stir. Continue to cook until the sauce thickens. Add in your cheese a handful at a time until all the cheese is melted. Remove from the heat and let cool for 10 minutes. Add the spinach and mix. Spoon into a casserole dish and top with extra grated cheese. Bake at 350 for 10-15 minutes until the cheese is nice and bubbly.

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