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Artichoke Spinach Dip



ARTICHOKE SPINACH DIP
Zio's Italian Kitchen Restaurant Recipe

Serves 6

3/4 cup chopped fresh spinach, compressed
3 ounces softened cream cheese
2 tablespoons butter
1 tablespoon olive oil
1/4 cup yellow onion, chopped
2 tablespoons flour
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 cup half and half
1/3 cup shredded Asagio or Parmesan cheese
1 cup monterey jack cheese, shredded
1/2 cup mozzarella cheese, shredded
1 (8 oz.) jar marinated artichokes, chopped and drained, reserve juice
1/4 cup reserved artichoke heart juice
2 teaspoons fresh lemon juice
1 1/2 tablespoon real bacon bits
1 roma tomato (diced for garnish)

In medium saucepan on medium low heat, place butter in sauce pan and melt. To melted butter stir in flour and salt; Stir briskly, until flour and butter turns into a thick paste; do not brown. Add to mixture slowly half and half and stir briskly until it thickens slightly.

Add Parmesan cheese, Monterey Jack cheese, 1/4 cup Mozzarella cheese and artichokes. Stir cheese mixture until heated through. Add 1/4 cup reserved artichoke juice and lemon juice, stir. Add fresh chopped spinach and bacon bits, stir well. Heat until all is blended and mixture starts to bubble very lightly, remove from heat.

Place in oiled shallow casserole dish; sprinkle remainder of mozzarella cheese on top. Place in a preheated oven at 350 degrees for 15 to 20 minutes.  Remove and sprinkle with diced tomato for garnish. Serve with Focaccia or crusty garlic bread.



SPINACH and ARTICHOKE PASTA
This dish at Zio's Italian Kitchen uses the artichoke spinach dip 
tossed with sliced chicken breast, bacon, onions, fresh Roma tomatoes, and penne pasta.

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