Spinach Blog Post By Tom Midford
Spinach is believed to have first been cultivated in ancient Persia, which is now Iran. From Persia, the spinach is believed to have been brought to India and Nepal. From Nepal, spinach spread to China in 647 C.E. The plant was introduced by muslims to Sicily in 827 C.E. By the 10th Century C.E., spinach had spread to the rest of the Mediterranean Sea. The Moors brought spinach to Spain in the 11th Century, and the plant was in Germany by the late 13th Century. Spinach was a common crop during Europe’s Medieval period. It was a mainstay of Mediterranean Cuisine in the 1400s. In the 1500s, Catherine de Medici invented the culinary term ‘a la Florentine’ after keeping her Italian cooks when she married into the French royal family. The term comes from French spinach dishes created in her honor.
Spinach was brought to the New World during the Columbian Exchange. In the 20th Century, spinach varieties were developed that were more resistant to disease and slower to bolt.
Spinach is currently grown around the world. The leading producers are China, Japan, and the U.S.A. Over 20 million tons of spinach are cultivated each year.
Fresh Spinach Salad Recipe
½ cup white sugar
½ cup white vinegar
1 cup vegetable oil
2 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
⅓ cup ketchup
1 small onion, chopped
5 slices bacon
1 pound fresh spinach - rinsed, dried and torn into bite size pieces
1 (4 ounce) can sliced water chestnuts, drained
Step 1 In a blender or food processor, combine sugar, vinegar, oil, Worcestershire sauce, ketchup and onion, and process until smooth. Set aside.
Step 2 Place bacon in a large, deep skillet. Cook over medium high heat until evenly brown. Drain, crumble and set aside.
Step 3 Place eggs in a saucepan and cover with cold water. Bring water to a boil and immediately remove from heat. Cover and let eggs stand in hot water for 10 to 12 minutes. Remove from hot water, cool, peel and chop.
Step 4 In a large bowl, toss together the spinach, water chestnuts, bacon and eggs. Serve with the dressing.
Suzbo. “Fresh Spinach Salad”. Allrecipes. May 29, 2022.
Miller, Laura. “Origin of Spinach Plants - Learn About Spinach History”. March 26, 2020.
https://www.allrecipes.com/recipe/24869/fresh-spinach-salad/. Accessed May 29, 2022.