Monday, March 15, 2010

Baked Spinach Artichoke Dip

I love Spinach Artichoke Dip, but it's so unhealthy for you. Probably one of the most unhealthy appetizers out there. So the other day, I was on a mission to make it healthier.

Now, most recipes out there make it with Alfredo sauce. Which is super high in fat and sodium. Ewww! So here's my little rendition for you, dear readers.

I had a hard time measuring everything out, because normally I just throw things in a pot and taste as I go or use my palm as a measuring guide. So here's what you need:
1 package of frozen spinach.
1/2 of artichoke hearts chopped up (you can use more if you like more artichokes in your dip)
1 package of fat free cream cheese softened
approximately 1 cup or so of fat free sour cream
approximately 1 cup or so of shredded Parmesan cheese (this is the "fattiest" thing in the dish)
A touch of skim milk to mix it all together well.
3-4 cloves of garlic finely minced
1 onion diced.
freshly cracked pepper to taste ( I don't add salt, because the Parmesan has plenty of it)

First thing you are going to want to do is saute' your diced onion and garlic in a pan with a little bit of EVOO. (extra virgin olive oil) or whatever your oil/butter preference is. I like mine to get caramelized. I love the sweet flavor the caramelization brings out in the onions. caramelization? Is that even a word?

Moving on.

Go ahead and preheat your oven to 300 or 325 degrees. Somewhere in there depending on how your oven heats.

In a mixing bowl, mix the spinach (make sure you squeeze the heck out of it to get rid of all that extra water), chopped artichoke hearts, cream cheese, sour cream, parmesean cheese and milk.

Give it a good swirl.

Now add in the caramelized onions and garlic. Mmmmm. Starting to smell good, right? Add some of that cracked pepper in there and mix, mix, mix. Or until it looks like this:
Looks pretty good right? Technically, you could eat it at this point if you reeeeeally wanted to, but I like mine hot!

So pour that mixture into a baking dish, sprinkle a little extra Parmesan cheese on top, and bake for about 30 minutes or so until it starts to get all bubbly and lightly golden brown on top. Or look something like this: ::insert ooo's and aahhh's here:: Serve with some toasted pita bread, torillas, or tortilla chips. Yum! Try it and tell me how you like it.