It’s time to do the New Year up in style with these easy to make and easy to eat Vegan Spinach Cheese Pinwheels. It’s another one of those recipes that will have your guests doing a double take when you tell them it’s vegan. Who would of thought something with such a buttery, cheesy taste could be? In celebration, I decided to do my happy dance…and to make a double batch.
I was about to put these lovelies in the oven when I realized I forgot something sort of crucial…the spinach. I had already gone through the process of thawing the frozen chopped spinach and draining it of excess liquid. And I had already rolled the pinwheels, sliced them and put them on the pan to be baked. But to be quite honest, I didn’t think these pinwheels would be quite as good (or as healthy) without the spinach, so you know what I did? I unrolled each individual sliced pinwheel and added spinach to each one before rolling them back up.
I don’t recommend it, but it worked.
It reminded me a little of rolling a cigarette. Not that I have much experience with that.
Well, to be completely honest, I do.
Now, before you pick up the phone to turn me into the healthy police, let me tell you that nary a puff has crossed my lips. And when I have given it a try I end up looking like the classic neophyte taking a puff, turning green, and hacking up a lung.
I don’t recommend that either.
My dad was a smoker. All in all, he smoked over 60 years of his life. And during one of those years, when I was just a child, he asked me to hold his cigarette while he worked on the car.
What kid holding her dad’s cigarette hasn’t thought of it? Of course I stuck out my hip, put a hand behind my head to take on my most serious adult-looking pose…and I took a puff. My dad looked at me long and hard when he came around from the other side of the car. “Did you take a puff of that cigarette” he asked with his typically gruff voice. I stood frozen and stared at him with mouth agape. I was shocked. He was on the other side of the car so how did he know? I already thought my dad was related to Thor, now I had proof.
It was a pretty smart plan on his part because it kept me away from cigarettes from that point on.
My dad went through a phase of rolling his own cigarettes; something it seems most smokers do at one point or another. And even though I was convinced not to smoke them myself, I did like rolling them for him. There was something about the feel of the loose leaf tobacco in my hands; delicately spreading them in the center of the thin paper and rolling them one turn at a time without tearing or spilling the tobacco. It was a challenge for my not-so dexterous young hands. Then one day my dad gave up the loose leaf cigarettes and went back to his favorite brand. Who knows, maybe they went on sale. Or maybe I wasn’t as good at rolling them as I thought I was.
It’s curious, isn’t it? That making a new recipe can bring back the strangest of memories? Pinwheels and rolled cigarettes.
All I can say is, don’t forget the spinach!
Vegan Spinach Pinwheels
- 1/2 cup vegan jack cheese, shredded
- 1/4 cup vegan parmesan cheese (or nutritional yeast flakes)
- 2 tablespoons chopped green onions
- 1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
- 1/2 teaspoon sea salt
- 1/4 cup flour
- One recipe Vegan Puff Pastry
- 1 tablespoon dairy-free margarine, melted
- 1 tablespoon soy milk
- 1 10 oz package frozen chopped spinach, thawed and drained
- Heat your oven to 400 F. Prepare a baking sheet by spraying it with vegetable spray.
- In a medium-sized bowl stir together the 1/2 cup shredded vegan cheese, 1/4 cup vegan parmesan (or nutritional yeast flakes), chopped onions, garlic powder, and sea salt.
- Prepare a work area by sprinkling it with flour. Lay out the prepared pastry sheet on the floured surface.
- Stir together the melted margarine and soy milk and brush this over the top of the pastry sheet, reserving some for the slices.
- Next, spread the cheese mixture over the buttered pastry sheet.
- Add the well-drained chopped spinach over the cheese mixture (don’t forget this step!).
- Begin at the side closest to you, roll the pastry sheet like you would roll cinnamon rolls.
- Use a serrated knife to cut 1/2-inch slices. Place sliced pieces on the prepared pan and brush the sliced pieces with any of the remaining margarine mixture.
- Place in the oven and bake for 15 – 20 minutes, until the pinwheels are a nice golden color.
- Remove from the oven and allow to cool slightly before serving warm.