A's Radically Three Cheese Spinach & Artichoke Dip

By October 11, 2010 , , , ,

No photos narration to this recipe, Andrew made it all himself while I was changing in my 80's outfit and crimping my hair. This marks the end of the 80s party series.

2 1/2 cups fresh baby spinach, shredded
1 teaspoon butter or olive oil
3 cloves garlic, minced
1 cup ricotta cheese
1 pkg. cream cheese
1 1/2 cups chopped artichoke hearts
1 cup shredded provolone cheese (never find it preshredded and the deli block style is like triple that of the sandwich slices, so we layered it on top, but i would recommend shredding the slices with a knife or rotary shredder, chips lose the battle to the almighty provolone.)
1 roasted red pepper (garnish) (skipped)
salt and pepper, to taste 
paprika (optional) (skipped)
lemon juice or lemon pepper (optional) (skipped)

In a skillet, sauté minced garlic 3-4 minutes over medium heat. Do not brown. Add washed shreds of baby spinach and sauté only until wilted but still a bright green (about 2 minutes) stirring to cook evenly. Remove pan from heat and stir in ricotta cheese and cream cheese, mixing well. Add artichoke hearts. Use artichoke hearts from a jar, drained well, or frozen if available; if using fresh artichoke hearts, steam until tender before using. Stir in salt and pepper to taste.
(This step is what makes this dip so awesome, I think the supervised melding vs. oven melding of all the ingredients really makes this dip awesome.
Spread mixture in a shallow baking dish and sprinkle with a thin layer of shredded provolone cheese. Garnish with a light sprinkling of paprika across the center for decoration.

Set baking dish on the center shelf of the oven and set oven to broil. Bake until cheese has melted and top is bubbly with lightly browned edges. Remove and allow to cool. Garnish center with a roasted red pepper cut into slices to resemble a flower for contrast. (Be sure to practice your flower cutting, lmao).

Serve with sliced chips, vegetables, crackers, toasted crusty bread rounds or fingers.

Variation: Sprinkle with lemon pepper and/or lemon juice before adding the layer of cheese for an extra zesty flavor.

Submitted by: CM

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