Saturday, January 9, 2010

Sometimes I Think I Can Cook - Baked Spinach And Artichoke Dip

To follow is the first of a series of recipes I'm hoping to put out every Saturday. This is one of those recipes that's almost always a hit. I've varied on this a few times, but this formula seems to work best.

Anybody who knows me well will tell you that goat cheese is just about my favorite thing on Planet Earth. I put it in quiche, frittata, salads and sauces. I put it on steaks, in chicken, on sandwiches. As far as I'm concerned, it will go with anything (I'm staring with an arched eyebrow at my coffee as I type this).

To follow is my version of classic spinach and artichoke dip. I find the goat cheese adds a bite and creaminess that parmesan can't muster, so I've cut the parmesan - and added more garlic. There is - I repeat - there is no such thing as too much garlic, (so long as you don't have any appointments the rest of the day, and everyone around you is consuming just as much, or otherwise too drunk to notice your breath). This is not a good date food.

You'll need:

Two Tablespoons of Extra Virgin Olive Oil
Four Cloves of Garlic
1 Bag of Chopped Fresh Spinach
1 14 oz. Can of Artichoke Hearts
2 16 oz. Packages of Sour Cream
1/2 pint of heavy cream
8 oz. Cream Cheese
Half-log of Goat Cheese
1 1/2 (ish) Tablespoons of whole grain mustard
1/4 Cup Grated Parmesan
1/4 cup grated sharp cheddar cheese (sharper the better)
1 1/2 cup Panko Crumbs
Salt (optional)

Preheat the oven to 350F.

Mince the garlic and sautee' it in olve oil until it starts to slightly brown. Add the spinach and satuee until rich green and wilted. Set aside.

In a separate bowl, mix together the sour cream, heavy cream, cream cheese, goat cheese and mustard. (No, this is not health food - but then, would you be eating spinach and artichoke dip if you were on a diet?). Salt if you think it needs it, but keep in mind the parmesan will be on top.

Add the artichokes and spinach, and mix well. Pour it into a casserole dish, and bake for about fifteen minutes, or until it's bubbly around the edges. While it's baking, mix the parmesan, cheddar and panko.

Once your dip is bubbly, take it out and switch to broiler. Dust the top of the dip with the panko and cheese mix, and broil until it browns over.

I like to serve this with baked pita wedges. If you use anything salty to dip with, the salt kind of takes over.

Let me know what you think - enjoy!


Mandy said...

This is one of my faves...feel free to make it FOR me anytime! Haha!

Love this recipe!