Here's a little spin on artichoke dip. Use asparagus instead. The result? Still creamy, but a bit more pungent and green, nutritionally excellent and easier to prepare.
Try it with any artichoke dip recipe... asparagus & crab, asparagus and spinach, asparagus and green chile... all would be delicious. Dip with toasted pieces of baguette or pita.
Hot Asparagus Dip
1 lb asparagus
1 1/2 teaspoons fresh lemon juice, or to taste
salt to taste
1/4 teaspoon garlic salt
2 scallions, thinly sliced
1/4 cup green chile, chopped
2 tablespoons unsalted butter
1 tablespoons all-purpose flour
3/4 cup half-and-half
2 oz finely grated parmesan (1/2 cup)
Preheat oven to 375F.
Clean and trim the asparagus, and chop into 1/4 inch pieces. Steam in a small pot until very soft. Drain, and return to pot. Add the chile, lemon juice, scallions, salt and garlic salt, and cook for another 3 to 6 minutes, or until the asparagus begins to break down. Transfer the mixture to a ceramic dish to bake.
In a small saucepan, heat the butter until melted and add the flour to make a roux. Slowly pour in the half and half while whisking. Increase the heat and bring just to a boil, whisking the whole time. The mixture should thicken. Remove from the heat. Pour the mixture over the asparagus mixture. Top with parmesan, and bake for 25 to 30 minutes, or until golden brown.
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Lara Ferroni is a former tech geek turned food geek who spends her days exploring the food culture of the Pacific Northwest. As a food writer and photographer, you might spy her learning to make kim chee in the back rooms of a local church, foraging for wild berries, or snapping away in the some of the Seattle and Portland's finest kitchens. You can find her work in publications such as Epicurious.com, Gourmet.com, Edible Communities (Seattle, San Francisco), Seattle Magazine, Seattle Metropolitan as well as numerous cookbooks, including Doughnuts: Simple and Delicious Recipes to Make at Home.