Last week, I hosted another Bite Club event for the Folio Weekly Bite Club. It was at The Fish Co., a restaurant and fish market in Jax Beaches. All of the food was phenominal, but there was one thing we had that stood out in my mind, a spinach cake served with sea bass. The cake was not meant to be the star of the dish, but everyone at the event loved it, and commented on it.
I asked Bill, the owner, what was in it, and he told me Asiago and Dijon (I had suspected horseradish, it did have a spicy kick, but it was Dijon). The fish was served with a key lime butter, which melted and pooled around the crisp cake, and added more delicious flavor. You can read about the entire meal and see photos of each course here.
When it came time to construct my version of the spinach cake, I decided to use frozen chopped spinach because it has a sturdier texture than cooking down and wilting spinach leaves. I also decided to finely cube the asiago so there would be nice pockets of the cheese. I used panko bread crumbs for extra crunch and texture, and rather than slather it with key lime butter, I squeezed a lemon on top to keep it healthy. I cooked the cakes in a dry, nonstick skillet to avoid fat, but they can be cooked with a bit of butter or EVOO for an even richer flavor and crust. These cakes were absolutely delicious, almost like a quiche, but with so much spinach flavor. And the dijon adds such great spice and flavor. Thanks, Fish Co., for the inspiration!
Asiago Spinach Cakes
2 boxes frozen, chopped spinach, thawed and drained well
1 egg, beaten
4 oz. asiago cheese, finely diced
1 yellow onion, minced
2 garlic cloves, minced
2 tbsp. dijon mustard
1/2 tsp. dried oregano
1 cup panko bread crumbs, separated
1/2 tsp. each salt and fresh ground black pepper
Nonstick cooking spray, EVOO or Butter
Add egg, mustard, oregano, salt and pepper to a mixing bowl, whisk to combine.
Add spinach, cheese, onion and garlic, fold into egg mixture.
Add 1/4-1/2 cup breadcrumbs to reach consistency where cakes stick together, but aren't overly dry.
Form into 8 cakes, dredge in remaining panko
Heat a nonstick skillet (I used a griddle) over medium heat, grease or spray with nonstick cooking spray.
Dredge cakes in remaining panko, press to coat.
Place cakes on griddle, cover and cook for 5 minutes, flip gently and cook for another 5 minutes, until toasted, and cheese begins to ooze out.
Serve imediately with wedges of lemon.