Old-fashioned Spinach Soup

bowl of spinach soup

I have warm memories of Popeye the Sailor Man eating spinach to grow strong. Spinach is chockful of nutrients, and is an excellent source of potassium, magnesium, vitamin K, vitamin A, manganese, folate, copper, vitamin B2, vitamin B6, vitamin E, and vitamin C, as well as being one of the best sources of plant-based iron. What’s not to like?

As a result, I’m always on the lookout for good spinach recipes. So when I came across a hundred-year-old for Spinach Soup, I decided to give it a try.

The creamy Spinach Soup was delicious with a slight peppery undertone which added interest.

Here’s the original recipe:

Spinach Soup Recipe
Source: Lowney’s Cook Book (Revised Edition, 1921)

Here’s the recipe updated for modern cooks:

Spinach Soup

  • Servings: 4 - 5
  • Difficulty: moderate
  • Print

2 quarts spinach (I used a 10 ounce package of spinach.)

6 cups water

1/2 bay leaf

1 teaspoon salt

3 tablespoons butter

3 tablespoons flour

2 cups milk

1 clove garlic or 2 tablespoons chopped onion (I used the chopped onion.)

1/4 teaspoon cayenne (red) pepper

1/4 teaspoon celery salt

1/2 cup cream, if desired

Put spinach and water into a large pan, and bring to a boil using high heat; reduce heat and simmer for 30 minutes. Removed from heat, and puree or press through a sieve. (I used a Foley mill.)

In the meantime, put milk, garlic or onion, and bay leaf in a saucepan. Using medium heat, scald the milk, while stirring occasionally. Remove from heat, and strain. (Discard the garlic or onion and bay leaf.)

Put butter in large pan or dutch oven. Melt using low heat; then stir in the flour. Slowly add scalded milk while stirring constantly. Then stir in the spinach mixture, salt, cayenne pepper, and celery salt. Heat until steamy, then serve.

If desired whip the cream, and put a dollop of the whipped cream on top of each bowl of soup.

http://www.ahundredyearsago.com

 

14 thoughts on “Old-fashioned Spinach Soup

  1. That seems an awfully long time to cook the spinach for, given that, served as a vegetable, three minutes is nearer the mark. Otherwise it looks a great recipe.

    1. I think it was possibly due to the difference in spinach. It wouldn’t have been the “baby spinach” we buy at the market now. Large leaf spinach can be tough and very firm with large ribs. While in South Africa, I prepared spinach often as it was one of the staple foods and readily available, and it took me some time to master the longer cooking time required because of the difference in texture and size of the leaves, ribs, and stems. I never tried to press it through a sieve though!

      1. That’s a fair point, though even with the old fashioned spinach we had when I was a child, half an hour would have been a lot. It’s rather t like Swiss chard I guess.

        1. There was also that whole “cook the vegetables to death” thing where I grew up, too. My dad always thought my veggies “were still raw” because they didn’t bend. 🙂

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