Florence Style Spinach in White Sauce / Spinaci alla Fiorentina
Anything alla fiorentina, meaning Florentine style, usually signifies that spinach is in the dish. In this preparation a white sauce, besciamella, provides added richness
- - BESCIAMELLA SAUCEMAKESCUPS
- 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
- 2 tablespoons King Arthur™ Unbleached, All-Purpose Flour
- 2 cups hot whole milk
- Fine sea salt to taste
- Grinding coarse black pepper
- 2 ten ounce packages fresh spinach, washed and stemmed
- 2 tablespoons Filippo Berio Extra Virgin Olive Oil
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- 1/4 teaspoon fine sea salt
- 1/4 cup grated Pecorino cheese
- Melt the butter in a saucepan over medium heat. Whisk in the flour to make a smooth paste. Slowly whisk in the milk and cook the mixture over medium heat until it thickens on the back of a spoon. Remove from the heat and stir in the salt and pepper. Cover and set aside.
- Preheat the oven to 350 F.
- Cook the spinach in a large pot without any additional water. When it is wilted, drain it and squeeze it dry. Heat the olive oil in a sauté pan, add the garlic and the spinach and cook, stirring with a wooden spoon, for 3 or 4 minutes. Remove from the heat and stir in 1/2 cup of the besciamella sauce and transfer the mixture to a 9-inch Pyrex baking dish.
- Spoon the remaining sauce over the top of the spinach and sprinkle the top with the cheese.
- Bake about 15 minutes or until the mixture is hot and the cheese has browned. Serve immediately.
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