Spinach Strata

May 25, 2011

The garden out back is beginning to produce an array of beautiful vegetables. My dad is an avid gardener, and those vegies are like his little babies. He grows everything from seed - beginning in a make-shift "greenhouse" he places beside our grand piano. As the weeks progress, the little black tubs of plants begin to overflow and create a small forest in the front room. (Apparently this is the best space in the house for as much sunlight as possible. He says he needs the space until he builds himself a real greenhouse outside. Mom is very patient and goes along with it well... Happy to see the fruits of her husband's in-door jungle when she bites into a juicy, ripe, rosy-red tomato in August.)

We've been munching on crisp spinach leaves for several weeks now. The earthy, fresh flavor of just-harvested greens is hard to beat. To me, spinach + olive oil + lemon is a trio made in heaven. At dinner, I love the leaves dressed simply - with a drizzle of olive oil and a squeeze of fresh lemon. But at breakfast, fresh spinach decorated throughout a rustic strata and combined with a bit of feta and oregano is the perfect way to start the day.

I have been making this strata almost weekly since I first discovered it. It is hearty, moist, and extremely flavorful. The top gets nice and brown in the oven, creating a lovely crunch. I admit, I've been guilty of stealing extra crispy bits to put on my breakfast plate. With the subtle, light taste of lemon, a bit of olive oil fruitiness, and a little saltiness from the feta, this strata is wonderful. I might also add that it is a snap to mix up. You put it all together the night before you want to serve it, and then bake it in the morning. I think this strata is a perfect way to use some of the abundant spinach out back. Dad agrees.

Notes: I've increased the bread quantity slightly because I found the strata a bit wet with just the 8 ounces originally called for. If you don't have day-old bread, you can dry fresh bread in an oven heated to 250°F for 10 to 15 minutes. I've been making this with regular homemade whole-wheat sandwich bread, but any dense whole-grain bread will do.

Adapted from Super Natural Every Day

6 friendly note(s):

  1. Although, I must say it is VERY difficult to be patient with dad's indoor under-the-grand-piano greenhouse. With his fluorescent light bulbs TAPED to the side of the piano, along with the aluminum foil sticking out every which way from the piano lid. I have to hold my tongue, though, and not complain since he is kind enough to be in charge of the garden!
    Okay, so yes, this Spinach Strata is YUMMY. Just had me some for breakfast, thankyouverymuch. :)

  2. That spinach dish looks delicious, and it definitely looks hearty!

  3. I am so jealous - I haven't had luck growing anything other than herbs in containers. This dish looks amazing, and must be terrific with spinach picked fresh from your garden.

  4. i love the idea of adding mustard to the strata - i make a version that i call "erik e strata" (the actor from chips)

  5. Your photos are very beautiful and definitely make me want to try out some of these recipes. I'm very glad I stumbled onto your blog.

  6. Mom - I think he took the tape down yesterday :)

    Chocolate Shavings - Thank you!

    Rivki - I'm sure your herbs are wonderful. If you've got some fresh oregano, it'd be fabulous on this!

    The Actor's Diet - The mustard plays a background role, but it definitely adds a little something special.

    Jen - Thank you so much! I hope you'll visit again :)


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