Monday, October 22, 2012

Fancy Pants App: Spinach-Jalapeno Dip

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Last weekend we watched football with John's family in Connecticut.  It was a rare warm day for a drive, and for football, and to see the gorgeous autumn leaves on all the trees.  We brought with us an all-new, never been tested before, dip recipe that John and I had dreamed up earlier in the week. This year, we not only have my whole family playing fantasy football (yes, again...and yes, K&E are winning, AGAIN), but we also have John's whole family playing in a different league of fantasay football.

The best part about that?  I am winning! Woohoo!  It wouldn't be nice to visit John's family WINNING fantasy football and not bring something delicious.  I let John choose because it was his family, after all and of course, at the top of his list was the jalapeno popper dip I made last football season.  I wanted to make a more traditional Spinach-Artichoke dip instead because, well, I wasn't really sure how much people like jalapenos (like me).

Like the great compromisers we are, we agreed to meld them into one.  I agreed, mainly because I had a bundle of spinach in the house and I'm always looking for ways to finish off the bag...but we don't have to let John in on that secret.  The result was this Spinach-Jalapeno dip...which was raved over!  It's another dip that you can make ahead of time, and stick in the oven right before serving.  You can hide the veggies for the kids and switching to reduced fat cheese and cream cheese resulted in less than 150 calories per serving!!
Spinach-Jalapeno Dip
Serves:  12 (about 1/2 cup)
16 ounces of Neufchatel cheese (1/3 less fat cream cheese)
1/2 cup skim milk
2 tablespoons garlic powder
1 tablespoon salt
2 tablespoons pepper
2 cups spinach, chopped*
1 cup jalapenos, diced
1 cup reduced-fat shredded cheddar cheese, divided
Chips, Celery, and Carrots for serving (optional)

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.  In a large bowl, combine Neufchatel cheese, milk, garlic, salt, and pepper until well-mixed.  Stir in spinach, jalapenos, and 2/3 cups of the cheddar cheese.  When it is all well-incorporated, transfer the mixture to a casserole dish (I like my 8-inch deep casserole dish for this).  Top with remaining 1/3 cup of cheddar cheese.  Bake for 15-20 minutes, until the top cheese is melted and bubbling.  Serve immediately with accoutrements. 

*we put 2 whole cups of spinach into our ninja and pulsed it until it was finely chopped (a little less than tooth-sized). 

Nutrition Info per serving, based on 12 Servings, from
Calories:  133
Fat:  10g
Carbohydrates: 4g
Sodium: 560mg
Protein:  6g
Sugar:  2g

Until the next time my oven is on...


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Welcome! I'm Dani (aka the Growing Foodie), just a girl balancing her career and passion for all things edible in NYC. I hope you'll join me in my adventures in life, through food. (Click for More)
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