Monday, November 21, 2016

Recipe Box: Warm Artichoke Spinach Dip in a Dutch Oven

It's time to think about Thanksgiving and what to prepare for that wonderful feast and the big family gatherings that happen almost without fail. Each year I like to find something new to share with the family until I hit upon a new favorite.

It's one of those rare days in Southern California where there is something wet falling from the sky. I think it's called rain, but since it's been so long since I've seen any. I have my doubts. Since it is actually overcast and somewhat cool outside, it puts me in the mood to bake.

Do you think Auntie Lou would mind if I sneak this one little treat into her recipe box?

If you won't tell, neither will I. Maybe she won't find it.


The Recipe


Artichoke Spinach Dip in a dutch oven

Adapted from:
www.seasonsandsuppers.ca

Just a note for those who choose to use anything cast iron for this recipe. Make sure to let your cast iron cool before serving!

Ingredients:

Bread Dough: (Short cut: Use frozen bread dough, thawed)
2 1/2 - 3 cups all purpose flour
2 1/2 tsp active dry or instant yeast
1 tsp fine salt
1 cup milk, warm, but not hot
2 Tbsp Melted Butter

Artichoke Spinach Dip:

4 cups loosely packed fresh baby spinach
1 can artichokes, chopped
4 oz cream cheese, room temp (about half a brick)
1/2 cup plain Greek yogurt
1/4 cup mayonnaise
3 - 6 cloves garlic, minced
dash of hot sauce
1/4 cup Cheddar cheese
1/4 cup Monterrey Jack cheese
Salt and pepper to taste

Instructions:

1. For making bread dough: (If using pre-made dough, skip ahead to the dip)
2. Add two cups of the four to a large bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a kneading hook. Add salt and combine.
3. Warm milk and stir in yeast. Let stand a few minutes to dissolve. Add yeast mixture to the bowl along with the melted butter.
4. Mixwi and add additional flour in 1/4 cup increments until a smooth dough is formed.
5. Transfer dough to an oiled bowl. Cover with plastic wrap and let rise until doubled, about 1 hour.

Make Dip:

1. Place fresh spinach in a microwave safe bowl and cook on high for 1 minute. Spinach should be wilted. Let cool. Chop into small pieces. Add to a medium bowl.
2. Add remaining dip ingredients and mix until well combined. Refrigerate as needed.

Assembly:

1. Turn dough out onto a lightly floured cutting board. Using a sharp knife, cut the dough into 16 equal pieces. Shape each piece into a ball by pinching the edges together underneath.
2. Generously butter a 8 or10 inch cast iron skillet or dutch oven, (if you don't have cast iron, any round baking dish will do). Find a bowl that is about 5 1/2 inches across the top. Spray the outside with cooking spray and place top-side down in the center of dish.
3. Arrange the dough balls around the outer edge of the bowl, pushing the dough together until all 16 fit.
4. Brush the tops of the dough with melted butter. Cover the dish with plastic wrap and let the dough rise until puffy, about 30 min.
5. Pre-heat the over to 375 F. with the rack in the center of oven.
6. Remove the bowl from the center. Spoon the dip into the center and top with Monterrey Jack.
7. Bake for about 30 min or until rolls are golden brown and the dip is bubbling.
8. Top the rolls with additional cheese and switch the oven to Broil. Watch carefully until cheese is toasted brown. Remove from oven.
9. Let dish stand for at least 5 - 10 minutes, or until just warm.
10. Enjoy

Don't let the number of steps and long rising times keep you from trying this recipe! It's definitely worth the effort!
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