Monday, August 31, 2009

Tasty Tuesday!

Most schools are back in session, but Little Miss's preschool tends to start up later. Lucky me, I'm the president of the PTO there, and we have a small cadre of volunteers for a number of reasons. In an effort to get things kicked off on a positive note, I invited some of the moms who have volunteered to help out already to my house for munchies and our first meeting.

And of course by some munchies, I made a tomato and avocado salad, brie with dessert sauces, marinated mozzarella with grape tomato skewers, and a hot cheesy spinach dip. Ok, and a few other things. In fact, I just realized that I forgot to put out the truffles. Oops. (See, don't you wish you were part of my PTO?)

It was good. I finished up the avocado and tomato salad for dinner last night, and it's possible that I'm currently snacking on the spinach dip right now as my dinner for tonight. Oh choices, choices.

Cheesy Hot Spinach Dip

3/4 c mayonnaise
8 oz neufchatel, softened (that's the naturally lower in fat cream cheese -- don't buy the plastic fat free stuff. Ick)
1 red onion, chopped
3 cloves garlic, minced
2 T olive oil
1/4 t Indian chili powder (ok, that's what I have and I love it, but use cayenne pepper or something similar)
12 oz frozen spinach
1 c cheddar cheese, grated (again, don't buy the pregrated stuff)
2 c Parmesan cheese, grated (do I need to repeat myself? I'm not even saying anything about the green can)
Salt and pepper to taste (barely any salt, but the pepper is needed)

Saute your well chopped onion in the olive oil. While it is sauteing, defrost your spinach and squeeze the heck out of it to get out allll the excess moisture. You want nearly dry spinach. Or be brave and lightly chop some fresh spinach and toss it in when the onion is nearly done.

Once the onion is sauteed, add the garlic for about thirty seconds. Then add the mayo and neufchatel. Toss in the spinach and chili powder (cayenne pepper). Stir on medium low heat until it's nice and combined and the neufchatel is totally melted.

Slowly add the cheddar cheese. As in add one small handful at a time, stir until totally melted, then add the next handful. If you don't do this, you'll end up with an icky mess of cheese. Once all the cheddar is incorporated, do the same for the Parmesan.

Once everything is incorporated, salt and pepper to taste. With the salt in the cheeses, you shouldn't need much at all. Serve it hot (keep it warm in crock pot doo-hickey) with fresh bread -- Hawaiian is great, but French is pretty darn good, too. When you run out of bread, tortilla chips make a good substitute. Not that I'd know personally...

This would also be great with chopped artichoke hearts. Or diced fresh tomatoes added at the end. Or other cheeses. Or anything your imagination can come up with, I'm thinking!


If you like me and want me to have the chocolate that I so desperately need, go vote for my pretty banana boats over at Laura's Best Food/Foodie Foto. Please vote for me?

And go visit Grace at Tempt My Tummy Tuesday for lots more goodies!


Ave September 1, 2009 at 4:12 AM  

Looks tasty!

Roxane September 1, 2009 at 9:14 AM  

Oh Spinach dip is my achilles heel! So good!

septembermom September 1, 2009 at 9:21 AM  

I usually don't play around with spinach, but I think you inspired me with this dish. Thanks, Michell!

Sherry September 1, 2009 at 11:48 AM  

Oh, yum! I lovvvvvve spinach dip!

Brenda September 1, 2009 at 3:33 PM  

That looks delicious, and it would be good with artichoke hearts too.

darnold23 September 1, 2009 at 6:10 PM  

Thanks for sharing. I hope to see you at Crock Pot Wednesday on Thanks again for posting.

Pat September 1, 2009 at 6:58 PM  

This is one more of your recipes I've copied and saved in my computer Recipes file! It sounds absolutely mouth-watering. You certainly are a high-energy person, Michelle!

H F W September 1, 2009 at 7:55 PM  

Spinach dip is one of my all-time favorites! ... and I'm close enough in proximity to be on your PTO, right? Lol!

Lisa@BlessedwithGrace September 1, 2009 at 8:44 PM  

That looks so great!!! I want to grab the chip and take a huge bite!!!Thanks for the recipe and linking to TMTT.

Michelle September 2, 2009 at 9:15 PM  

Ave - Would I post it if it weren't? :)

Roxane - Better your Achilles Heel than your Achilles Hip, right?

Kelly - Ohhh it's worth it. Spinach is so yummmy!

Sherry - So do it, and there are so many different ways to make it. And ummm I think they're just about all yummy! Have I said yummy yet?

Brenda - I know, I was rather bummed that we were out of them at the moment. Next time!

Debbie - You're welcome. I hope you like it.

Pat - High energy? Thanks! I just see it as a way to avoid boredom. I hope you like this recipe!

Hyacynth - Hey, we'll take anyone we can get even if you aren't ACTUALLY in our district. The next meeting is Sept 16 at 10am. Can you make it ;)

Lisa - Now that's a neat compliment, thanks!

Angela September 7, 2009 at 11:23 AM  

Sounds like a great dip for football season! I am sorry I did not make it over here in time to vote for your banana boats! I'm slowly getting caught up on blogging and reading. Finally, things are settling down at least a little around here!

Michelle September 9, 2009 at 9:12 AM  

Angela - Yep, I'm definitely doing it for Super Bowl this year! And no worries on the voting - I actually somehow won!

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