Thursday, January 8

Spinach Artichoke Dip

The Pioneer Woman never lies. Her recipes are always spot on, and quite frankly I think she's funny as hell. When I am looking for something new to take to a potluck or for any event, I gravitate towards her blog. It's like my safety blanket. 

As I was making her Spinach Artichoke Dip for the first time three or four years ago, I knew it was going to be a show stopper based simply on its ingredient list. The only people I've come across who don't just love this dip are allergic to artichokes (that's what they've said, anyway) and couldn't even try one tiny chip full. Sad, I know.

Furthermore, and in full disclosure, I follow this recipe methodically. I have yet to try any adaptations, although I keep thinking corn would add a fun texture and that bacon could bring this whole thing to another level. Some day, maybe I'll get around to all these ideas, but until then just enjoy The Best Spinach Artichoke Dip Ever. [Click for a link to the original recipe.]


3 Tablespoons Butter
4 Tablespoons Garlic, Minced
1 bag Spinach
Salt And Pepper, to taste
2 cans Artichoke Hearts, Rinsed And Drained
3 Tablespoons Butter (additional)
3 Tablespoons Flour
1-1/2 cup Whole Milk (more If Needed)
1 package (8 Ounce) Softened Cream Cheese
1/2 cup Crumbled Feta
1/2 cup Grated Parmesan
3/4 cups Grated Pepper Jack Cheese
1/4 teaspoon Cayenne
Extra Grated Pepper Jack
Pita Wedges, Tortilla Chips, or Crackers

Preparation Instructions
Melt 3 tablespoons butter in a skillet over medium heat. Add the minced garlic and cook for a couple of minutes. Crank up the heat a bit and throw in the spinach. Stir around and cook for a couple of minutes until the spinach wilts. Remove the spinach from the skillet and put it in a small strainer. Squeeze the excess juice back into the skillet. Set the spinach aside. 

Throw in the artichokes and cook over medium high heat for several minutes, until liquid is cooked off and artichokes start to get a little color. Remove the artichokes. 

In the same skillet or a different pot, melt 3 additional tablespoons of butter and whisk in 3 tablespoons of flour until it makes a paste. Cook over medium-low heat for a minute or two, then pour in milk. Stir and cook until slightly thickened; splash in more milk if needed. 

Add cream cheese, feta, Parmesan, pepper jack, and cayenne and stir until cheese are melted and sauce is smooth. Chop artichokes and spinach and add to the sauce. Stir to combine. 

Pour into buttered baking dish. Top with extra grated pepper jack and bake at 375 for 15 minutes, or until cheese is melted and bubbly. 

Serve with pita wedges, chips, or crackers!