PHOTOGRAPHY: SCOTT PHILLIPS
Serves 4 to 6
Growing up in Spain in the summers left me with some of my fondest food memories, especially my memories of pignoli nuts. When I was young, my grandmother would give me a bucket to fill up with pine nuts. I would climb a pine tree, open the cone and shake out the pine nuts, as well as the snails, but that is another story! When I came to America as a young girl, I remember opening a pine cone only to find it empty! I thought, How could this be? A country with empty pine cones? But the love of pignoli nuts is still with me, so why don't you try them in this delicious, light and nutritious spinach salad? Enjoy it for lunch, or as a side at dinner. I love it as a stand-alone for dinner!
What you will need:
What you need to do:
In a bowl, combine the raisins with hot water to cover and set aside to plump for 30 minutes.
In a small, dry frying pan, toast the pine nuts over medium heat, shaking the pan often, until fragrant and golden, 3 to 5 minutes. Pour onto a plate to cool. (You could also toast in a 350'F oven for about 8 minutes or you can sauté the pine nuts in a frying pan with 1 to 2 teaspoons olive oil over medium heat until golden and fragrant, then transfer to the plate with a slotted spoon to cool.)
In a large sauté pan, heat 3 tablespoons olive oil over medium heat. Add the onion and cook, stirring often, until the onion is softened and translucent, about 10 minutes. Add the spinach with just the rinsing water clinging to its leaves and cook, turning and stirring constantly with tongs, until wilted, 3 to 5 minutes.
Drain the raisins and add to the pan along with the pine nuts. Stir well and season with salt (very small amount) and pepper.
Transfer to a serving dish and serve warm.