February 08, 2011

Dishin' from the Kitchen: Hot Spinach-Artichoke Dip

Got caught up in the copy edits for A Sheetcake Named Desire last week. I thought I'd catch up with the world today, but two grand-kids with the flu have left me feeling a little under the weather today. So for your culinary pleasure, I'm going to share a favorite recipe. This one comes from my daughter's kitchen and it's a hit whenever she takes it to a party. 

Hot Spinach-Artichoke Dip

1 Bottle diced artichoke hearts (get the non-marinated variety for best results) 
1/2 Cup chopped spinach (you can use frozen or fresh but never canned) 
8 ounces cream cheese
1 Cup grated Parmesan Cheese (divided in half) 
1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes (more or less to taste) 
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/8 teaspoon garlic powder
dash of ground black pepper

On the side: chips, crackers, or toasted bread  

Put the artichoke hearts and spinach in a microwave safe bowl and cover it with plastic wrap. Cut a small slit in the plastic to let the steam out, then microwave on high for 4 minutes. Stir and zap it again for another 2-3 minutes or until the artichoke hearts are tender.

Heat the cream cheese in a small bowl in the microwave set on high for 1 minute (or until soft). Add the spinach and artichoke hearts to the cream cheese and stir well.

Add the remaining ingredients (using half of the Parmesan) to the cream cheese and combine. Put in an oven safe bowl and top with other half of Parmesan cheese. Bake at 350 for 25-30 minutes, or until bubbly.

Serve warm with the crackers, chips or toasted bread for dipping and enjoy!

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