The first time I ate artichoke dip was at my aunts house (not Delilah but one of my other aunts). The backyard was bustling. Kids hitting baseballs in the batting cage off in the distant way back of the yard. My uncle passionately pontificating on religion and philosophy (this was before we put a family ban on both of these topics). My mom and aunts in the kitchen chopping and baking with ever-full glasses of champagne. Delilah and me sitting on the patio scheming for our future business which was a coffee house called ‘Auntie-Niecey’s Waterfall’. Although we were only twelve the seeds of entrepreneurship had already been planted in us. It’s so cool to think back on those times and realize that although we never got our coffee house off house idea going, we are business partners.
My aunt emerged from the kitchen with a casserole dish filled with a creamy bubbling just-out-of-the-oven concoction and a bag of tortilla chips. She set them down on the table and when I took the first bite, my love affair with artichoke dip began.
Years later when I was throwing a party in my own house, I thought about her artichoke dip and called her up to get her recipe. That first time I made it, I followed her recipe exactly. As the years went on I started getting creative and putting my own spin on it. I added Sriracha for an extra kick. When dairy became something my body no longer tolerated, I stopped making the artichoke dip completely. When I realized that dairy made from goats milk was easier on my stomach, I adjusted her recipe again and substituted goats milk cream cheese and goats milk cheese for the cows milk that was in the original one. Honestly, this isn’t the perfect appetizer if you’re super health conscious or on a diet but once you taste a bite, you might be willing to let your regime go, and dig in.
What to get:
-3 12 ounce cans of artichokes (I used 2 cans of marinated artichokes and 1 can of no-marinated artichokes)
-9 ounces of goat’s milk cream cheese
-1/2 pound of grated goat’s milk cheddar cheese
-Red pepper flakes
-Salt and pepper
-6 tablespoons of mayonnaise
-Grated or shaved hard Italian cheese like Parmesan or asiago
-1 4 ounce can of mild green chiles
1. Cut the artichokes into smaller bits and add to a large metal bowl. 2. Add the mild green chiles, mayonnaise, goat’s milk cream cheese, goat’s milk cheddar cheese and 3/4 of hard Italian cheese.
3. Squeeze the lemon into the bowl.
4. Add salt, pepper and Sriracha (I usually add 1 teaspoon of salt, 1 teaspoon of pepper and 2 teaspoons of Sriracha but feel free to add more).5. Use a hand blender to mix everything.6. Put the mixture into a large baking dish and add the remainder of the hard Italian cheese.
7. Bake in 375 degree oven for 45 minutes or until the top is golden brown.