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Spinach and Artichoke Dip

Now I realize there are a million and one recipes for spinach artichoke dip out there, really I do.  But dag nabbit; it’s a woman’s prerogative to have a serious flavor craving and, in turn, follow said craving, all the way to the ooey gooey dip bowl conclusion.   You know I’m right because you’ve been there yourself.   Don’t try and deny it, we both know better.  Allow me to set the scene.


Once a month Scott and I get together with three other amazing couples and share a meal.  We rotate houses along with which dish we bring to the table.  This month was my turn to host, hence, I was assigned the main course.   Perfect.  I would make a low country boil and serve it up with a warm, fresh, rustic loaf of bread.  As luck would have it, the morning before the feast was to commence the call came in.  One of our friends, the appetizer course,  had a last minute family emergency and wouldn’t be able to make it to the dinner that night.  Six hours until showtime and no starter in sight.

With the clock ticking, I knew it was up to me to give the masses a beginning to remember.  I sorted out idea after idea in my head, looking for the perfect solution.  When all was said and done, there was no true rationale to my decision, only the satisfying of serious cravings; spinach artichoke dip and bruschetta to be exact.  I felt like I needed to make them both so why not combine the two and create one taste tantalizing show stopper of a dip?

Needless to say, the last minute creation was an automatic hit; so delicious in fact, that I couldn’t even finagle a shot of the finished product straight out of the oven.  By the time I managed to grab my camera it was too late.  The dip laden bread slices were already half eaten with lots of satisfied grunts, groans and chewing noises murmuring their approval.  No matter.   I was still able to smuggle out a small jug for pictures (and round two for muah at lunch the following day – score!) to share with you all.

If I don’t have you craving a creamy dreamy slice of bread dipped heaven yet, then dang it I’m done.  But my guess, is you’re more than ready to eat so let’s do it.

The nice thing about spinach artichoke dip is that making a bowl requires the simple action of dumping in a bunch of deletable flavors, stirring it up and cooking.  Easy peasy.

You’ve assembled your cast of characters, now dump them all in a baking dish and admire your handiwork.

For mine, I sprinkled on a topping of panko, melted butter and Parmesan cheese across the top for added fabulousness.

Toss it in the oven and  let it cook up all bubbly and delicious.  For the toasts you’ll simply mix together a little olive oil and balsamic,  brush it over the tops and toss them in an oven or toaster oven to get warm for a few minutes.

Craving absolved.  At least for today.

I hope everyone has a wonderful Memorial Day weekend.  We’re heading north to Virginia for a ride on the Creeper Trail.  My next post may be a day or two late getting published next week as a result.  See you after the break!

Spinach and Artichoke Dip

Yield: About 5 Cups of Dip

Total Time: 50 min

Ingredients:

1 14 Oz. Can Quartered Artichoke Hearts
6 Cups Fresh Spinach
2 Roma Tomatoes, Chopped
3/4 Cup Parmesan Cheese
1/2 Pound Fresh Mozzarella, Cubed
1/2 Cup Sour Cream
1/3 Cup Mayonnaise
1/2 Lemon, Juiced
1/2 tsp Garlic Powder
1/4 tsp Crushed Red Pepper
Salt and Pepper to Taste
1/3 Cup Panko Bread Crumbs
1 Tbsp Melted Butter
1 French Baguette, Sliced
1/4 Cup Olive Oil
2 Tbsp Balsamic Vinegar

Directions:

In a large baking dish, combine the artichokes, spinach, tomatoes, 1/2 cup of the Parmesan, the mozzarella, sour cream, mayo, lemon juice, garlic powder, crushed red pepper, salt and pepper.

In a separate small bowl combine the bread crumbs, butter and the remaining quarter cup of Parmesan cheese. Sprinkle over the top of the dip mixture.

Place in a 350 degree oven for 20 to 30 minutes or until edges are bubbling and hot.

For the baguette slices, mix together the olive oil and vinegar. Brush the mixture over each slice and place on a baking sheet.

Toast in an oven heated to 250 degrees for 10 minutes. Serve along side dip.

Amount Per Serving (Based on 12 Servings of Dip)

Calories 276.0, Total Fat 18.7 g, Saturated Fat 10.0 g, Polyunsaturated Fat 2.3 g, Monounsaturated Fat 5.3 g, Cholesterol 52.1 mg, Sodium 610.3 mg, Potassium 408.9 mg, Total Carbohydrate 11.9 g, Dietary Fiber 3.1 g, Sugars 0.4 g, Protein 17.2 g