Artichoke Sesame Dipping Sauce

Artichokes

One of my spawn requested artichokes as a snack and since I love my little demons, I was quick to agree.  Plus?  They’re a vegetable full of anti-oxidants, ranking as the number one vegetable in anti-oxidant count.  This thorny leaved vegetable has also been reputed to help in the cure of liver disease.  Let’s not forget fiber; one medium artichoke has more fiber than a cup of prunes, and lets face it an artichoke is a lot more fun to eat than a cup of prunes!  I wasn’t sure what to serve with these beauties and tested this recipe I found at Epicurious and was instantly hooked.

Dipping Sauce

  • 1/2 cup plain yogurt
  • 3 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons sesame oil
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons honey
  • 1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
  • 3/4 teaspoon salt

Mix well and enjoy

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Not sure how to prepare an artichoke?  I read how at Simply Recipes:

1.  Cut the stem off the bottom end, leaving up to an inch attached to the artichoke.  Then cut off about 3/4 inch off the tip.  Using kitchen shears trim off the thorny ends of each leaf.

2.  Put a couple inches of water in a large pot with a slice or two of lemon, a bay leaf and a clove of garlic.  Insert a steaming basket and add the artichokes to the basket. 

3.  Cover, bring to a boil then reduce to simmer.

4.  Depending on the size of your artichoke, cook between 20-45 minutes or until the outer leaves can be pulled off easily.

I’ve only eaten whole artichokes one other time and I couldn’t’ remember just how to eat one so the fact that the cooking instructions also came with eating instructions was immensely helpful!

1.  Pull off one leaf at a time and dip the white fleshy end into your sauce.  Gripping the other end of the leaf, pull through your teeth to remove the soft pulpy portion.  Discard the remaining leaf and continue until all the leaves have been eaten.

2.  Once you’ve reached the heart of your artichoke, you’ll see a “pod” of fur.  Using a knife cut all the way around the furry part, much like you’d cut a grapefruit.  Then, using a spoon scoop the furry section out.  Cut the remaining soft stem part into pieces, dip and enjoy.

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Fry Sauce

Fry Sauce

If you live in Utah, or have ever visited Utah, you know what joy Fry Sauce is.  The savory, creamy dip that must accompany the French fry & tater tot.  To let a fry or tot go naked is a sin not many are willing to commit once they’ve tasted Fry Sauce.

What I’ve discovered, after leaving Utah, is that no one else seems to know what it is and therefore has been deprived of this lesser known comfort food.

The ingredients are simple:

3 hefty dollops of Mayonnaise (not Miracle Whip)

hearty squirt of ketchup

The measurements are based solely on the number of fries or tots you have to dip.

Mix thoroughly, removing any lumps of mayo until you have a lovely shade of pink – if it’s coral in color add a little more mayo.  If it’s not pink enough, add a little more ketchup.  Mix till satisfied and enjoy your dipping!

Honey Mustard

I recently made Amanda’s Ham & Provolone Stromboli but halfway into the recipe I realized I didn’t have any honey mustard – GRR!  So I improvised!

Ingredients

1/2 cup Kraft mayonnaise with olive oil (not Miracle Whip!)

1/4 cup yellow mustard

1/4 cup honey

1/4 tsp salt

Directions

Whisk together until all the lumps are out and chill.

Super Easy Spinach Dip

My cousin’s wife made this for a family party and I loved it!!!

Spinach Dip

1 Can Spinach, Well Drained
1 pkg. vegetable soup mix
16 oz sour cream
2 cans Water Chestnuts, chopped
¾ Cup Mayonnaise
3 Green Onions, chopped

1. Drain Spinach Well
2. Mix all ingredients until well blended
3. Cover and chill for several hours before serving

Guacamole

Oh how I LOVE fresh guacamole! This recipe is tweaked from my friend Alfega’s recipe.

3-4 avocados
3 roma tomatos, diced
1 fresh lime
1 cup cilantro, chopped
salt to taste

Remove pit from avocados and set to side (do not throw away!). Mash avocado in glass bowl (note: DO NOT use metal when working with avocado–it will turn brown more quickly) with a plastic fork. Add all other ingredients. Put pits back into bowl with guacamole (this helps it not turn brown). Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate until party (no more than 3 hours). Enjoy!

Pineapple Cheese Ball

4 – 8oz. Cream Cheese
1 – large can crushed pineapple (drained until all juice is gone)
2 – Cups crushed pecans
4 – green onions diced small
1 – Cup green pepper diced small
2 – Tablespoons seasoning salt

Blend together all ingredients and shape into a ball and roll in pecans!

Serve with crackers or veggies

Homemade Salsa

1 can (28oz) Tomatoes and juice
3 TBS dried red pepper flakes
6oz jalapenos with juice
1/2 tsp ground cumin
1/2 tsp ground oregano
1 tsp salt
2 TBS garlic salt
3 TBS sugar
dried onions and cilantro to taste

Add all ingredients into the blender and blend! If it is to HOT for your taste you can always add more tomatoes to calm it down!

Spinach & Artichoke Dip

Spinach & Artichoke Dip
This dip tastes just like Chili’s!
1 c. mozzarella cheese (pre-shredded is easiest)
8 oz. cream cheese – cubed
1/4 c.parmesan cheese
2 cloves garlic – minced
1/4 tsp. pepper
14 oz. can artichokes – finely chopped
10 oz. bag of spinach (fresh is best but frozen, then thawed, works well too) – chopped
Place all ingredients in crock pot. Cook on high 2 hours. Stir and serve with warm tortilla chips.