Today I’m going to give you a ‘throwback recipe’…because it’s Thursday. Get it?
I’ve been thinking about my early days as a mom recently, perhaps it’s because several of my friends are just starting to have babies or maybe it’s because my own children are no longer ‘little ones’. Back in the day, let’s say 20 years back, there was no google. Any sort of parenting advice that I received came from my mother, books, or my network of mom friends.
The same went for cooking. In my younger days as a university student mom our meals were simple and sometimes contained pre packaged ingredients. What can I say? As a cash strapped, naïve, ‘just off the farm’ young mom with little time to cook, packaged food was awfully convenient. We ate a lot of canned soup, zoodles, hot dogs, and mac ‘n’ cheese which I carefully balanced out with a salad or fruit. I wasn’t completely clueless. On the weekends I had a bit more time to experiment and often made muffins, lasagna, and always a roast beef for dinner.
I remember looking for an easy side dish for a Thanksgiving feast one year. My parents were driving the two hours to visit us for a special meal in our tiny apartment in Saskatoon. I wanted something a bit different than the usual mashed potatoes, carrots, and stuffing to go with the turkey. Also, sneaking spinach into something yummy and hand held was an important part of my repertoire as the mom of a young toddler. I think I must have found this recipe on the side of the stuffing box, but I’m not quite sure.
I made these stuffing balls again recently for a large family get together and my son’s fiancée begged to take the leftovers home. It’s been so long since I’ve made them I wasn’t sure if they were still relevant in our house in the present day, but they were still quite popular. The next time I make them I will play around a bit with the seasoning as I found them incredibly salty. I think that this is one of those dishes that can easily be converted by using quality whole food ingredients instead of pre-packaged nonsense.
Spinach Stuffing Balls
6 eggs, lightly beaten
6 oz. pkg. stuffing mix*
1/2 cup butter (use unsalted if using a stuffing mix), melted
1 cup grated Parmesan cheese
1/4 tsp. salt
1/8 tsp. pepper
2 (10 oz.) pkg. frozen chopped spinach, thawed and squeezed dry
In a bowl, combine eggs, stuffing mix, butter, Parmesan cheese, salt and pepper. Add spinach; mix well. Shape into 1-1/2-in. balls; place in an ungreased 15-in. x 10-in. x 1-in. baking pan. Bake at 350 degrees for 12-15 minutes or until lightly browned.
*You could use regular dried bread cubes here, but do use small cubes and not crubs or torn dried bread. I think it works better for the texture and appeal. If you are using plain bread crumbs and not the stuffing mix, add regular spices as you would in your stuffing mix (Sage, rosemary, thyme, salt, pepper).