Thursday, January 30, 2014

Cheesy Artichoke & Spinach Dip

Who doesn't love a good, hot, cheesy artichoke dip?  I've looked for years for a really good recipe - one worth taking the calorie plunge for - and this is it!  Make it ahead - freeze it- and bake it when company comes!

6 T butter
4 T crushed garlic
1 bag fresh baby spinach
3 cans artichoke hearts, rinsed and drained
3 T flour
1 1/2 cup milk
8 oz softened cream cheese
1/2 cup feta
1/2 cup parmesan
3/4 cup grated pepper jack cheese
1/4 t cayenne pepper
pita wedges

Melt 3 tablespoons butter in skillet.  Sautee garlic in butter for just a minute or two.  Stir the spinach into the butter-garlic mixture, and cook until the spinach wilts.  Remove the spinach from the skillet and place it in a colander to drain further.

Roughly chop the artichoke hearts and saute them in the warm skillet to remove excess water.  Remove the artichokes, and set aside.

Melt the remaining 3 T butter in the same skillet.  Add the flour to form a paste.  Over low heat, slowly add the milk, whisking to prevent lumps from forming.  Stir and cook until the milk mixture has thickened (add a bit more milk if too thick).

Throw all four cheeses into the thickened white sauce.  Sprinkle with cayenne pepper, and stir until the cheeses are melted and thoroughly blended into the sauce.

Now add the artichokes and spinach. Stir well.  Pour the mixture into a buttered size appropriate baking dish.  Top with an extra bit of grated pepper jack and bake at 375 for 15 minutes (top should be melted, gold and bubbly).

Serve with pita wedges, chips or crackers.

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