Wednesday, February 22, 2012

White Bean, Spinach, and Artichoke Dip

This version of spinach-artichoke dip is healthier and frankly, far tastier than its cream cheese-filled cousin. You can serve this chilled, at room temperature, or warmed. I spread it over these Parmesan-Peppercorn Biscotti from Gourmet.

Makes about 4 cups
Total Time: 20+ minutes, depending on serving temperature

9 oz fresh spinach leaves
1 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil
1/2 C finely diced onion
1 14-oz can white beans, drained and rinsed, or about 1 3/4 C cooked white beans
1/2 C good low-fat mayonnaise, store-bought or homemade
1/8 C grated Parmesan, plus more if serving hot
1 large garlic clove, minced
1 6-oz jar or can of artichoke hearts, drained, and cut into small-ish pieces
1/2 tsp cayenne
salt, to taste
freshly ground black pepper, to taste

Preheat the oven to 350F (175C) if you'd like to serve the dip warm.

Bring a large pot of water to boil for the spinach. Generously salt the water, then blanch the spinach leaves for a minute, or until wilted. Remove from the water and squeeze or press into a mesh strainer to remove as much liquid as possible. Add the spinach to a medium mixing bowl.

Meanwhile, heat the olive oil over medium-high heat and cook the onion until translucent. Add the onion to the spinach.

In a food processor, pulse the white beans with the mayonnaise, cheese, garlic clove, and cayenne until very smooth. Taste for seasonings and then add as much salt and pepper as you need. (Definitely taste the puree before adding the salt because there will be salt coming from the beans, mayonnaise, and cheese.) Transfer the mixture to the bowl with the spinach and onions, add the artichokes, and stir to combine. If serving hot, add more grated cheese on the top and heat in the oven until warmed through and cheese begins to brown on top. If serving chilled, an hour or so in the fridge will do it. Enjoy!

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