These delicate and savory custards make an unusual side dish. I serve them alongside roasted meat or, with the addition of a swirl of tomato sauce on top, as a first course. You can substitute chard or kale for the spinach, though both need to cook 5 minutes longer to become tender.
Bake until a toothpick inserted into the middle comes out clean and the surface is lightly golden, 40–50 minutes. To serve the cups, remove from the water bath and let cool, about 10 minutes. Run a thin-bladed knife around the inside edge of a cup, invert a serving plate over the cup, invert the plate and cup together, and lift off the cup. To serve the gratin dish, unmold the same way onto a platter, and cut into slices to serve at once.
© 2013 All rights reserved. Published by Weldon Owen.