I first came across this recipe scrawled in the pages of an old journal given to me by a close friend. Dated 1846 and yellowed with time, its fragile pages describe farm chores coupled with the details of household management, favorite poems, and recipes like the one below, which specifies the use of young spinach, freshly picked, and, like most old recipes, provides few details on quantity. I’ve adapted the recipe, substituting white pepper for black. I make it often in the spring, when tender baby spinach arrives in our CSA box weekly, until the weather grows too hot and stifles the tender greens.
This recipe comes from my first cookbook The Nourished Kitchen, released just last week.
Trim the spinach of any tough stems or veins, then coarsely chop the spinach leaves. Toss the spinach into a large, heavy stockpot. Set it on the stove over medium-low heat, cover the pot with a tight-fitting lid, and cook for 15 to 20 minutes, until completely tender.
Drain the wilted spinach in a colander, pressing it down to remove any excess liquid. Return the pot to the stove, add the butter, and melt over low heat. Toss in the spinach. Stir in the salt, white pepper, and minced egg, then serve.