Stop me if you’ve heard this one already:
What did the eggs benedict say to the rest of the breakfast table?
Hardy, har har.. Rob told the joke a few times over the holidays.
With the balmy Houston weather and having returned back to work, it does not really feel too much like holidays. In fact, I am at a loss what to do for New Year’s Eve. Rob wants a party. I, however, will be working all day. And, to be honest, I doubt Rob or I will make it all the way until midnight. We are such party poopers. Early risers, we go to bed early as well. With a morning alarm for 5 am, I am usually the earliest to wake. However, two of my co-workers have their alarms for 4:30am. They beat me! Obviously, we need to invite them over after work. Celebrate St John’s, Newfoundland’s new year at 9:30 pm and then call it a night. Last year, Rob and I celebrated by watching the Sydney fireworks at 8am, but alas, I will be busy at work, already.
Even if I am not headed out for a party, at least I may provide you with some party fare. Splendid warm but still delicious cold as leftovers, here is a protein-packed spinach and artichoke dip. Definitely not as heavy as real cheese dips, this is more of a veggie-centric dip whipped together with some silken tofu. There is more of a hint of cheesiness, thanks to the nutritional yeast. I don’t particularly enjoy nooch-heavy cheeses, but this was pretty good. It is a nice way to bring a dish that could double as a main, should your other options be limited, and you eat a bunch of it. You could totally chow down on a quarter of this, easily. And you should.
What are your plans for New Year’s Eve?
PS. The winner of The Cheesy Vegan is Shannon.
Spinach and Artichoke Dip
Adapted from The Pancake Princess
2 tsp olive oil, or oil of choice
1 small onion, diced
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 bunch spinach, washed and destemmed
1 10-oz package soft tofu, drained (I used silken firm)
1/2 cup nutritional yeast
2 tbsp apple cider vinegar
1 tsp dried basil
1/2 tsp salt
freshly ground pepper, to taste
2.5-3 cups artichoke hearts, drained (canned or frozen, I used frozen)
1. Preheat oven to 350F. Lightly grease a 9×9″ oven-proof pan (a larger pan will require less baking time, and vice versa).
2. Meanwhile, in a large skillet over medium-high heat, heat oil. Once hot, add the onions, sprinkle with salt and saute until softened, around 5 minutes. Add water if it begins to stick. Add chopped garlic and cook for one minute more, until fragrant but taking care not to burn it. Add spinach, cover and allow steam to wilt the leaves, approximately 1-2 minutes. Remove lid. Remove from heat to cool slightly.
3. In a blender or food processor, blend together the tofu, nutritional yeast, apple cider vinegar, basil and salt. Season to taste with additional salt or pepper. Blend until smooth. Stir in the artichoke hearts and spinach and pulse until finely chopped, leaving you with some texture.
4. Pour mixture into your prepared pan and bake for 30 minutes, or until it is warm and lightly brown on top. Let cool slightly prior to serving with your favourite veggies, crackers, bread, etc.
Serves 8+ as an appetizer