Sautéed Spinach with Raisins & Pine Nuts
This is a really quick and tasty way to cook spinach. If you are using baby spinach, the kind often sold for salads, don’t bother steaming it, skip step 4, and add it raw in batches in step 5. It will wilt in almost seconds.
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1. Dry roast the pine nuts in a skillet until they are pale brown. Don’t let them burn. Tip into a bowl as soon as they are ready. Set aside.
2. Put the raisins in a small bowl and pour a little boiling water over the raisins to plump them. Set aside.
3. Strip the tender green parts of the spinach leaves from the stalks and place in a large colander. If using baby spinach, skip this step. Wash them thoroughly to remove any grit.
4. Place the spinach, with the water that clings to them, into a large saucepan. Set over a high heat, add a pinch of sea salt. Cover and cook for about 1 and half to 2 minutes. Drain, and plunge the spinach into cold water to stop the cooking. Drain again, squeezing out any excess water.
5. Heat the olive oil in a wide skillet or wok over a medium high heat. When it starts to ripple, add the garlic and hot pepper. Sautee until the garlic starts to turn golden brown and the pepper has darkened. Remove from the pan and discard. Drain the raisins and reserve their soaking water.
6. Add the spinach and the drained raisins to the pan. Sauté until the spinach is heated through. If the spinach looks dry while you sauté it, add a little of the raisin soak water. Add the toasted, pine nuts and parsley, and sauté a minute or two more to combine. Serve.