Garlic and Sesame Baby Spinach

I only ate spinach for the first time about a year ago and now I can’t believe I went without it for so long. It’s such a versatile ingredient, it’s super good for you and goes with nearly everything. This time, it was inspired by some Thai flavours and makes the perfect side dish to some Thai styled chicken, or if you’re a die-hard South African like me, some lekker Karoo lamb choppies.

The only expensive thing in this dish is the Panchetta, which you can feel free to leave out completely or replace with bacon.


1/8th cup sesame seeds

50g Panchetta*

400g baby spinach

3 tspn. crushed garlic

Salt and pepper to taste

Olive oil for cooking


Portions: serves 4 as a side.


1. Without any oil or liquid, place your sesame seeds into a pot on a high heat. Toast them for about 4min until golden brown, shaking them around occasionally to ensure even cooking. Place toasted sesame seeds in a side dish when done to be added again later.

Garlic and Sesame Baby SpinachGarlic and Sesame Baby SpinachGarlic and Sesame Baby Spinach

2. Add your Panchetta to the pot and allow to cook for about 5 minutes allowing the fat to render. You’ll use this fat to cook your spinach in, so if you’re not adding Panchetta, this is where you’ll need to add a dash of olive oil instead.

Garlic and Sesame Baby Spinach

3. Add your crushed garlic and allow to cook for a further 2 minutes before adding your baby spinach.

Garlic and Sesame Baby Spinach

4. Cook until your spinach has wilted, stirring occasionally. Add your toasted sesame seeds and serve.

Garlic and Sesame Baby Spinach Garlic and Sesame Baby Spinach

(How cute is this heart-shaped serving dish from Mr. Price Home?)

Serving suggestion:

I served my garlic and sesame spinach with some grilled lamb chops. Simply brush your chops with some olive oil and season with salt and pepper.

Cook them fat-side down first to render the fat before grilling them in a riffle pan for 7-10 minutes either side.

Garlic and Sesame Baby Spinach 1413914094954 Garlic and Sesame Baby Spinach Garlic and Sesame Baby Spinach