Friday, February 24, 2012

Spinach & Artichoke Dip

When it comes to appetizers at a restaurant, spinach and artichoke dip is one of our favorites.  We have had this at Applebee's and Cotton Patch Cafe, so naturally I decided to try to make my own version at home. I searched thru hundreds of recipes online and finally decided to go with the basics I saw in each of them.

The base of this dip is an alfredo sauce mixed with cream cheese.  I loaded mine with both spinach and artichokes in an effort to get my daughter to eat as many vegetables as possible.  Looking thru the fridge, I found some Romano, Parmesan, and mozzarella cheeses, so in they went as well.  A little salt and pepper for seasoning and it was ready for the oven.  It came out restaurant quality, and there was even enough to serve as a snack for the next couple days.

One key to this dip is making sure you remove as much moisture from the spinach as possible.  I start with frozen spinach which I thaw either in the fridge or the microwave.  Once it is completely thawed, I place it on a stack of about 6-8 pieces of paper towel and roll it up.  I then wring out the paper towels like they are a wet cloth.  I can usually get about half a cup of moisture out this way, which means the finished dip will have a much creamier texture.

I will definitely make this again, but there are a couple things I may try to, as Emeril would say, kick it up a notch.  For example, the next time I make this I will probably add a couple roasted and chopped poblano peppers to the mixture to give it a little heat and a smoky flavor.  But that's for later.  Right now, I'm going back for a few more chips and some of this dip.

Spinach & Artichoke Dip

10 oz Alfredo sauce (homemade or jarred)
4 oz cream cheese, softened
1/2 cup shredded Romano cheese
1/2 cup shredded mozzarella cheese
1/3 cup grated Parmesan cheese
1 10 oz package frozen spinach, thawed
1 15 oz can artichoke hearts, drained and chopped
4 cloves garlic, minced

Preheat oven to 375 degrees F.  Thaw frozen spinach and squeeze to remove as much moisture as possible.  In large mixing bowl, stir together all ingredients.

Pour mixture into an 8x8 inch baking dish that has been sprayed with non-stick cooking spray.  Bake a t 375 degrees F for 30 minutes, or until hot and bubbly and top begins to brown (if desired, you can place the baked dip under the broiler for a minute or two if you like the top more browned).  Serve with tortilla or pita chips.

1 comment:

  1. This will be one of the most popular at our house! We loved having you link up to our "Strut Your Stuff Saturday." We hope you'll be back! -The Sisters


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