Growing up in my home we had some staple meals that my mom always turned to. We now tease her that she could make a casserole out of anything we had in the house plus a can of cream of mushroom soup.
I hear there was a time when my mom used to cook up a storm on a regular basis. My aunts and uncles have told me so. When feeling up for the challenge, she has it in her to whip up some pretty fantastic food. Holidays seems to be the time when her cooking alter-ego decides to rise from the ashes.
She will wake up early that morning, and since I am usually sleeping at her house on the holiday, I can her her scurry around the kitchen. She moves around making bee lines from one side of the kitchen to the other. The sound of her footsteps and the clanking of pots and pans lets you know there are masterpieces in progress. Focused, hurried, concentrated. She likes to have all the cooking done by 10:00 AM so she can relax for the rest of the day during the calm before the storm.
If it is a holiday, you can bet your bottom dollar that one of the things she is whipping up is her famous spinach casserole. She has been making it for as long as I can remember. In our house, everyone always had at least 2 servings of it. It is a favorite among us. This is a dish I know will be included on my family holidays in the future when I am older. Yes, the ingredients may come frozen, boxed, or from a can, but in combination they are delicious foods that never fail to make me nostalgic.
3 boxes frozen spinach
1 can artichoke hearts, drained and quartered
2 packages cream cheese
2 sticks of butter
10 Ritz crackers
Preheat oven to 375F. Thaw spinach and drain. Spread spinach on the bottom of a large pie plate. Spread artichoke hearts on top of spinach. With a mixer, cream butter and cream cheese until smooth. Spread mixture over spinach and artichokes. Crumble Ritz crackers over the top. Bake for 30 minutes until top is lightly browned.