Spinach, Artichoke & Parmesan Dip

Spinach, Artichoke & Parmesan Dip

Ingredients:

1 pint/568ml Whole milk

Aromatics – 1 shallot peeled and halved, 1 celery stick, 5 – 6 parsley stalks, 1 clove, 1 bay leaf

50g Butter

50g Flour

Clove of garlic – finely chopped

125g Baby leaf spinach

400g Can or jar of artichoke hearts, drained and roughly chopped

100g Parmesan cheese – grated

50g Cheddar cheese – grated

Salt, white pepper and a squeeze of fresh lemon juice to taste

Pinch of freshly grated nutmeg (optional)

Method:

1) Put the milk in a sauce pan with the aromatics; bring to the boil and take of the heat. Set the milk aside to let it infuse.

2) Melt the butter with the garlic in another saucepan on a medium to low heat, then add the flour to form a thick paste (the roux), and cook gently for a further 4 – 5 minutes.

3) Discard the aromatics from the milk, and gradually add the milk to the roux, using a whisk to avoid lumps forming and cook out the flour to a béchamel consistency.

4) Add the parmesan and Cheddar and stir until it is melted in (add nutmeg if using), followed by the artichokes and cook gently for 2 – 3 minutes, then finally add the spinach so it wilts.

5) Remove from the heat and carefully add the mixture to a food processor and blitz to a smooth dip (or to your desired consistency). The dip can be refrigerated for 2 – 3 days, and be bought up to room temperature or gently reheated in a microwave when needed.

6) Season with salt and pepper and a squeeze of lemon juice. Portion in bowls topped with a little grated parmesan and a drizzle of good quality extra virgin olive oil, serve and with lightly fried warm corn tortilla chips with a dusting of smoked paprika.

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