The new year has come and gone, and so has Chanukah and Christmas, two holidays that filled our house with guests and lots of gifts for the girls. We had our bathroom floor replaced before the break, and now we, and the contractors know, that the pipes are in the wall, rather than the floor. Live and learn.
We hosted a latke bash for the last night of Chanukah, and served latkes made with veggies from our winter CSA: sweet potato, potato, and celery root and carrot. We also used potatoes Lilli planted with her kindergarten at the farm at her school last year. They weeded and composted, and cared for the potatoes since last April.
We served the latkes with your choice of sour cream or apple sauce. For those wanting to guild the lily, you could also have creme fraiche, chives and caviar I found in my pantry when we were cleaning up from the aforementioned bathroom floor incident.
I also made a gluten-free mac and cheese, with local milk, cheese and butter. (At Sylvie’s suggestion, I used corn starch in the roux; it was very easy to work with.) We had a big Greek salad, and this spinach and artichoke dip.
I’ve been serving this dip for years, and it’s always a hit. Apologies for not sharing it sooner. The combo of fresh spinach and garlic, chopped artichoke hearts, cream cheese, cheese, a touch of mayo, and more cheese on top, is a winner, regardless of the gathering.
It has about a pound of fresh spinach in it. That may seem like a lot, but as we say in this house, spinach is a lie. Plus, when you realize how much dairy the recipe calls for, the spinach seems to shrink even more than it has already.
I tend to make this and bake it hours before serving, and then pop it into a hot oven for a brown crust on top right before serving.
Amazingly, we had some left over from the party, and this weekend Rich put it in the waffle iron with batter for breakfast. Proof that you really can waffle anything!
Spinach and Artichoke Dip
1 lb. fresh spinach, cleaned
2 cloves garlic, slivered
1 can, chopped artichoke hearts
⅓ cup mayonnaise
1 package cream cheese, softened
2 cups shredded cheese (think mozzarella or provolone)
1.5 cups shredded parmesan
Preheat oven to 350F
In a very large pot, heat a tablespoon of olive oil. Add garlic, and a pinch of kosher salt. Add the spinach, in batches if you have to. Cook it down – add a little water to help it cook down. This should take about seven minutes.
While the spinach cooks, chop your artichoke hearts and cut up the cream cheese.
Once the spinach has shrunk, add the artichoke hearts and cook for about 30 seconds. Remove from heat and add the rest of the ingredients, except for the parmesan. Stir until everything is combined and soft.
Pour mixture into a lasagna pan and bake in the 350F oven for 20 minutes.
Before serving, raise the temperature of the oven to 400, sprinkle the parmesan on top, and bake until golden and bubbly.
Serve with tortilla chips, pita chips, or cut up vegetables. Up to you, really.