Artichoke Heart, Cheese and Basil AppetizerPrep: 10 min Cook: 10 min Servings: 1by David Van Buskirk3 recipes>
Warm, cheesy, bubbly cheese:::drink some wine and enjoy your day...and top it off with some toasted bread or tortilla chips...life is good....
- 1- 8 oz. Block Cream Cheese, room temperature
- 2 cups Fresh spinach leaves, rinsed and coarsely chopped
- 1 cups Artichoke hearts in brine or marinade, drained chopped
- 2 tsp. Fresh minced garlic
- 2 TB Fresh basil, minced or 2 TB Basil pesto
- 1 good shaving of ground nutmeg, about two pinches, enough to barely taste
- 1 TB fresh grated lemon zest
- 1/2 tsp kosher salt
- 1/4 tsp freshly ground black pepper
- ½ tsp ground Cardamom
- 1 cup Provolone cheese, grated (or Mozzarella)
- 1 cup Parmesan cheese, shredded
- In a pot of boiling water, blanch spinach for 5 seconds, drain, and run under cold water. Squeeze out as much water as possible and pat with a dry towel. Chop roughly.
- Cut cream cheese into 4 pieces and heat in microwave for 1 minute in a covered bowl until very hot.
- In a medium-sized sauce pan, place the place the hot cream cheese and the Provolone and Parmesan cheese and stir over low heat until melted, and smooth.
- Add remaining ingredients to the hot cheese mixture. Keeping burner on low, heat all the ingredients slowly until very warm, stirring every so often to incorporate cheeses together. Taste and adjust seasonings.
- Scrape into a ramekin or small casserole dish and let cool about 15 minutes, sprinkle with an even layer of Parmesan cheese and place under hot broiler until Parmesan topping is golden and bubbly. Serve with toasted baguette slices or even tortilla chips.
- If you need to serve later:
- After placing in your container, let cool and then cover with plastic and refrigerate until ready to serve.
- While still covered, heat dish in microwave for 2 minutes.
- Sprinkle about Â½ tablespoon Parmesan cheese on top, place under broiler for 1 minute (or until golden and bubbly) and serve with golden toasts.
- VARIATIONS: Omit spinach and add one or more of the following or whatever strikes your fancy. Try experimenting with cheeses also, just look for good melting cheeses.
- Â½ cup sun-dried tomatoes
- Orange rind
- Fresh Thyme
- Â½ cup kalamata olives (or black)
- Fresh Rosemary
- Fresh Marjoram
- 1 cup toasted and chopped nuts
- Bleu cheese
- Gorgonzola Cheese
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