Guess what? This recipe isn’t for a baked good! Hallelujah! Or not. Maybe you, too, like baked goods and so are amused by the fact that it feels like 99% of the recipes I post are for baked goods or desserts. And I suppose technically this could be considered a baked good as well, but it’s an appetizer, and it’s savory, so it doesn’t feel quite the same as another cookie recipe.
Anyways. Every year my church holds a series of dinner parties in parishioners homes as a way for people to meet each other and talk, and learn about our church in a lower-stakes environment. The meals are potluck, and they’re a good opportunity to meet and talk to people that you wouldn’t have otherwise. The party that I went to this year was billed as being all appetizers, so I had that challenge for what to make, and not a lot of inspiration. I wanted something that wasn’t too difficult, but would also be “fancy” or “adult” so that the fact that I would likely be the youngest person at this party by nearly a decade wasn’t too much of a sore thumb occasion. If you are the kind of “young person” (young being a relative thing, since I’m definitely an adult in my mid-30s, even if I don’t feel like it all the time), if you bring something to a potluck that is not just something you bought at the store, people can tell you made an effort, and will respect you more. Yes, this kind of sucks, having to put in more effort than those around you, but you know what is good? Being respected and thought of well, despite being the youngest person in the room.
So I did my new default “I have no idea what to make, but I want to make something yummy” recipe browsing, which meant going to the Tasty app and searching “appetizer”, and then scrolling until I came upon something which I a) wanted to make that b) looked like it fit the bill. And this pull apart bread seemed perfect. People love spinach artichoke dip (even me, who doesn’t eat artichokes), and any kind of pull-apart bread – especially using puff pastry – is a fun party addition. I went a little overboard and doubled the recipe, because I didn’t think about the fact that EVERYONE would be bringing appetizers, and so while it got eaten, there was quite a bit left over after the party.
Fortunately for the Boy and the girls, it’s the kind of thing that reheats well. And I don’t know if it’s because I doubled the recipe, or if it just makes lots of extra dip for the middle, but we had lots of dip leftover for the boy and girls to eat while I went out, and it turns out to reheat very well also (I would recommend doing this in the oven if you want the pastry to remain crispy). And the dip by itself is pretty yummy as well, so if you just want a decent spinach artichoke dip recipe, ignore the puff pastry and egg ingredients and simply mix everything else together, providing some sort of cracker or bread as a dip vehicle. It’s creamy, with a surprising little bite from the red pepper flakes.
So yeah. A winning recipe on all fronts. And the hostess even asked me for the recipe, so I’ll be passing that along to her as soon as I get my act together.
Spinach Artichoke Pull-Apart Bread
2 sheets puff pastry, thawed
8 oz cream cheese, softened
14 oz artichoke heart, 1 can, drained and chopped
¾ cup fresh spinach, cooked and drained of excess water, or frozen and thawed
¼ cup sour cream
½ cup grated parmesan cheese
½ cup shredded mozzarella cheese
2 teaspoons garlic powder
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon pepper
½ teaspoon red pepper flakes
1 egg, beaten
Preheat oven to 400ºF. In a large bowl, combine cream cheese, artichoke hearts, spinach, sour cream, parmesan, mozzarella, garlic powder, salt, pepper, and red pepper flakes.
Place the two sheets of puff pastry on a parchment paper-lined baking tray. Using a dinner plate as a guide, cut out equal size circles from both sheets. Remove the top sheet. On the bottom sheet, spread spinach artichoke mixture and lay the other sheet of puff pastry on top.
Take a glass and place it in the center of the circle. Using a knife, cut away from the edge of the glass to create 12 equally spaced strips. Take each strip and twist then brush with beaten egg.
Bake at 400°F for 30 minutes, or until golden. Enjoy!