Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Olive Garden Spinach & Artichoke Dip

This recipe is from, my comments are in parentheses. I love this stuff!!

2 fresh artichokes
1 lemon, juice of, squeezed
1 teaspoon salt


1 (14 ounce) can artichoke hearts, drained and sliced (I used fresh, but I LOVE canned. Mmmmm.)
1 lb cream cheese, room temperature
8 ounces Mascarpone cheese, room temperature (This is Italian cream cheese. It comes in a tub.)
2 tablespoons all-purpose flour, sifted
1 cup Parmesan cheese, grated
1/4 teaspoon fresh thyme leave
1/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
1 tablespoon fresh flat leaf parsley, chopped
1 fresh garlic clove, minced
5 green onions, chopped
ground black pepper
1 (6 ounce) package fresh spinach, chopped
(I added 4-5 slices bacon, cooked crisp then crumbled)
8 slices crusty Italian bread (I used a round loaf of sour dough, sliced thin.)
extra virgin olive oil-to drizzle on bread (I didn't do this step)

1. Artichoke Preparation:.
2. TRIM off stems and dry leaves/ends of leaves
3. BOIL artichokes in 3 quarts water with 1 tsp salt and lemon juice for 30 minutes.
4. COOL artichokes. Clean, peel, remove center “choke” (the hairy part) and slice artichoke.
5. FOLLOW Dip Preparation steps below.
6. Dip Preparation:
7. Preheat oven to 325 degrees.
8. MIX all ingredients in a large bowl, except bread and extra virgin olive oil. (Room temperature cheese wasn't soft enough to stir, so I microwaved it all together for almost a minute. I figured it was going to get baked anyway.)
9. COAT a large non-stick baking pan with pan spray; fill pan with mixture. Bake at 325ºF for about 25 minutes or until bubbling and center is hot.
10. DRIZZLE both sides of bread with extra virgin olive oil. Grill bread on both sides. (I left out the oil and just used my toaster.)
11. SPRINKLE top of heated dip with Parmesan cheese. Serve hot with grilled bread.