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Friday night, while everyone else was out in bars, I was experimenting with artichoke spinach dip. You see, I’ve had the same package of frozen spinach for several months, and I just needed an excuse to use it before it became archaic. Though I didn’t have parmesan, a typical and even essential ingredient in artichoke spinach dip, I was determined to make my own version with the ingredients I did have.

 

The Recipe:

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1 package frozen spinach

14 ounce container artichoke hearts

16 ounces cream cheese

1/2 cup mayo

1/2 white onion, diced

2 tbsp. sour cream

2 tbsp. garlic

1 tsp, black pepper

dash lemon juice

dash smoked sweet paprika

pinch cayenne pepper

pinch white pepper

pinch sea salt

6 slices vegetarian bacon (this mostly adds a smoky flavor)

1/4 cup shredded cheddar

1 cup shredded pizza cheese blend

 

Directions: Use an oven safe and microwave safe casserole dish to cut back on dishes. Thaw the spinach by heating in the dish in the microwave. Then heat the vegetarian bacon in the same dish, so it will be cooked enough that you can taste the dip as you go. Slice the bacon into bits. Then add all the ingredients except the cheese, and heat a few more minutes in the microwave. Stir and make sure your spices are to your taste. Then mix the cheddar and 1/2 cup of white cheese blend into the dip. Put in the oven at 375 degrees for 10 minutes. Remove, and sprinkle the top with the remaining cheese. Put back in the oven for 15 more minutes, for a total oven time of 25 minutes. Serve with tortilla chips, and get your carnivore friends to try it. When they don’t hate it, tell them there is fake bacon in it and it will blow their minds. Maybe even convert them to vegetarian one step at a time.

 

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