I have made this hot spinach and artichoke dip several times. Last week, it was our lunch on a lazy Sunday afternoon. I have made this ahead of time and reheated on a grill for a NASCAR TAILGATE party. Both times it was great.
PREP TIME: 30 MINUTES MAKES 3 CUPS
Make sure to squeeze as much water as possible from the spinach and artichoke hearts. I serve mine with tortilla chips.
Adjust oven rack to the middle position and heat oven to 450º. Melt 2 TABLESPOONS OF BUTTER in a large saucepan over medium-high heat.
COOK 1 ONION THAT HAS BEEN MINCED until softened (about 5 minutes). ADD TWO 9 OZ. BOXES OF FROZEN ARTICHOKE HEARTS, that have been THAWED, SQUEEZED, DRIED then CHOPPED. Cook until barely browned. ADD 2 MINCED GARLIC CLOVES. Cook for about 30 seconds, until fragrant. Transfer mixture to a plate and set aside.
Melt 2 MORE TABLESPOONS OF BUTTER in now empty pan. STIR IN 1/4 CUP ALL-PURPOSE FLOUR and cook until just golden (about 1 minute). Slowly stir in 2 CUPS HALF-AND-HALF, 1 1/4 CUPS OF SHREDDED PARMESAN CHEESE, 1 TABLESPOON LEMON JUICE, 1 TABLESPOON of your favorite HOT SAUCE, and 1 TEASPOON KOSHER SALT. Reduce the heat to medium-low and simmer until thickened (about 3 minutes).
Off heat, STIR in one 10 OZ. BOX OF FROZEN CHOPPED SPINACH that have been THAWED AND SQUEEZED DRY and reserved ARTICHOKE MIXTURE. At this point the dip can be refrigerated in an airtight container for up to 24 hours.
Transfer the dip to a 1 quart soufflé or baking dish. Sprinkle 1/4 CUP SHREDDED PARMESAN CHEESE on top. Bake until golden brown and bubbling, about 15 minutes.
Cool for 5 minutes. Serve.
If the dip was refrigerated, let it sit at room temperature for 1 hour before sprinkling with final cheese. Bake, covered with foil, in a 450º environment for 10 minutes. Remove the foil, then bake until golden brown and bubbling, about 15 minutes longer.