By Davee Kaplan
Spinach is so good for you and is packed with vitamins and nutrients. However, biting into some sand while eating a lovely spinach salad can ruin your confidence for ever using fresh spinach again. Because spinach grows in sandy soil it clings to the growing leaves. With proper washing, you will be able to eat spinach and get the benefits of its beta carotene, vitamins B complex, C, and E, folic acid, iron, zinc, and magnesium. Here are some simple tips to show how easy it is to properly wash and prepare spinach for later use.
Select healthy spinach
Look for crisp dark green leaves with a fresh fragrance. Avoid any leaves that are limp, damaged, or spotted. One pound of spinach leaves cooks down to about 1 cup of cooked spinach. Figure 8 ounces of raw spinach per serving.
Wash and store spinach leaves
Wash the spinach right after you buy it or when you’re ready to use it. I like to wash my veggies right when I get home from shopping, so all my fruits and veggies are ready to use when it’s time to cook. But many wait and wash their fruits and vegetables just before using them. Choose the way that works best for your lifestyle.
Step 1. Remove the spinach roots by twisting or cutting with kitchen shears just above the stem line. Most of the soil and grit comes from the roots, so removing them first makes a huge difference.
Step 2. Fill the sink or large stockpot half way with water. The larger the basin, the better the outcome.
Step 3. Put a handful of spinach in the water and lightly swish around for about 20 seconds.
Step 4. Let the spinach soak for a few minutes while the dirt sinks to the bottom.
Step 5. Remove spinach and place in a colander.
Step 6. Refill the sink and repeat steps 3 through 5.
Step 7. Thoroughly dry with a salad spinner or by blotting with paper towels (I like to spin).
Step 8. Wrap in dry paper towels and store in a plastic bag or zip lock container. Pack the spinach lightly so maintain freshness
Uses for spinach
After using your spinach replace the paper towels each time. Some of my favorite uses for spinach is in green smoothies, scrambled eggs, sandwiches, as spinach salad, on pizza, and steamed with a little vinegar. You can also use spinach in pasta and sauces. Let your imagination go wild, because this powerhouse of nutrients will give you lots of energy.
image by steadyhealth.com