We just had our annual Iron Chef party – the challenge was to use ONE of the following ingredients in a dish: crab, chocolate or cranberries. I picked crab and made this dip. Guess who won the iron chef challenge!? Yep, that’s right – Hot Artichoke & Crab Dip! 🙂
This dip is everything you would expect from a hot creamy artichoke and crab dip – plus more! The 1/2 tsp cayenne adds a fabulous kick. Spicy but not too spicy. If you’re not into spice and heat – omit! Definitely not recommended for kids, but a wonderful “grown up” dish. I served this with cucumber and red bell pepper slices, but toasted baguette or pita would be great if you prefer!
1 (8 ounce) package cream cheese, softened
1 cup mayonnaise
1 clove garlic, pressed
1 (14 ounce) can artichoke hearts in water, drained and chopped
1 1/2 cups cooked crabmeat
3/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese + 1/4 cup for topping
1/3 cup chopped green onion + 2 tsps for garnish
1/3 cup chopped red bell pepper + 2 tsps for garnish
1/2 tsp ground cayenne pepper
1 hot house cucumber, sliced (for dipping)
1 red bell pepper, sliced (for dipping)
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C)
Combine cream cheese and mayonnaise in a large bowl until smooth; stir in garlic and cayenne. Gently stir artichoke hearts, crab, Parmesan cheese, 1/3 cup green onion, 1/3 cup red bell pepper. Transfer the dip to a 9-inch pie dish and sprinkle top with rest of cheese.
Bake in the preheated oven until topping is golden brown and dip is hot, ~30 minutes. Garnish with 2 teaspoons green onion and 2 teaspoons chopped red bell pepper.
We were in lovely Walla Walla this summer and thanks to the Grandparents, Adam and I got a rare night out while on a trip! We had dinner at Brasserie Four, a fabulous little French restaurant on main street.. Everything on the menu looked excellent and everything we sampled was excellent! I had Bouillabaisse for dinner – fresh seafood in golden saffron, orange, fennel and wine broth – amazing! After some searching and testing I found a recipe from Steamy Kitchen that was a close match. And here it is! Enjoy! 🙂
3 tablespoons olive oil
1 leek, white part only, chopped
1 onion, chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced
peel of 1 orange, orange part only (use vegetable peeler)
3 tomatoes, chopped
1/3 cup chopped fennel fronds
fresh herbs (in any combination): thyme, parsley, oregano (I used 1 tsp each of dry herbs, as I did not have fresh ones at hand)
1/2 teaspoon saffron threads, crushed
3-4 pounds of fish trimmings (heads, bones, tail), shrimp shells (I skipped this as did not have – worked out fine, but the broth was probably less ‘seafoody’ than it could have been)
10 cups water
1 cup dry white wine
sea salt to taste
3 pounds of assorted fish and shellfish (clams and mussels should be scrubbed clean)
In a large stockpot, heat the olive oil on medium heat. When hot, add in the leek, onion and garlic. Sauté for 5 minutes until softened but not brown.
Add in the orange peel, tomatoes, fennel, fresh herbs, saffron, fish trimmings, water, wine, salt turn the heat to high and bring to a boil. Then turn the heat to low and simmer for 30 minutes. Strain the soup into another large pot.
Bring the strained soup to a boil over medium high heat. Taste and adjust with additional salt if needed. The soup should be slightly salty (remember we still have unseasoned seafood to add into the soup). Now we’ll cook the seafood, adding in the items that require the most cooking time first. If you have whole lobster tails or large crab claws, add them in first and give them a 2-minute head start. Clams next, then the mussels and extra-large shrimp, lastly the fish, scallops and any smaller shrimp. You want to be careful not to overcook the seafood, so 4-5 minutes max then turn off the heat.
Ladle bouillabaisse into each bowl with the seafood and garnish with fresh fennel fronds.