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Saturday, October 13, 2012

Spinach Artichoke Dip

 My happy hours are getting more and more elaborate, and since I often have the same guests over, I've been varying the selection of things to nibble and dip into.  Last night was Mexinight.  I introduced Black Bean Chili to The Pack, but this jar of artichoke hearts has been begging me to participate in my gatherings, so I finally let it partake in the happiest hour of the day.  I also am pleased to annouce that cream cheese is no longer a foreign unfindable ingredient in France.  They even have a French version of Philadelphia to avoid American monopoly.  I'd have to blind taste them side by side, but the Elle & Vire copy comes extremely close to the original!
1 jar artichoke hearts, drained
2 cloves garlic, peeled
1 cube frozen spinach (or large handful fresh)
1 Tbsp butter
3 Tbsp cream cheese
1 Tbsp heavy whipping cream
1 Tbsp mayonaise
3 Tbsp grated parmesan
fresh ground pepper
pinch of cayenne
1.  In a saucepan, melt the butter and lightly color the artichoke hearts.  Add the garlic and spinach and stir until spinach is thawed and heated.
2.  Turn off heat and stir in cream cheese, cream and mayonaise.
3.  Gently insert a hand blender and homogenize the goodness.
4.  Put on low heat and stir in the parmesan, pepper, and cayenne.  With the tip of your right index, dip and place in the center of your tongue.
Can you feel the warmth?
Serve warm with dippable items such as tortilla chips, pita chips, carrots, breadsticks, celery, broccoli, cauliflower....whatever makes your artichoke heart skip.  To keep with the theme of Mexinight, I varied the dips with salsa and homemade guacamole.

This reminded me of home sweet home.
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