Friday, July 31, 2009

Creamy Spinach and Artichoke Pasta

You know that awesome, creamy hot spinach and artichoke dip which often shows up at gatherings and that everybody gobbles up? Because it has spinach and artichokes in it you can justify hefting another glob onto a chip at parties and admiring your vegetable intake. It is divine, but the mayonnaise makes it so caloric you might as well chow down on a Frito-stuffed, deep-fried Oreo while you're at it.

I have a variation recipe on that dip which I blogged about before, which uses Jerusalem Artichokes (or sunchokes) to add a little crunch. Since my introduction to the much healthier Greek yogurt, I've been subbing t in to some of our Crispy repertoire for a healthier switch from sour cream and mayonnaise.

Greek yogurt tastes great in a saucier version of the Spinach-Artichoke Dip idea over pasta. I used fresh spinach, but other greens would probably work in this dish and it would certainly be a great pantry dinner for the winter months using frozen spinach.

To make enough sauce for 1 lb. of your favorite hot, cooked pasta, match a batch of:

Spinach-Artichoke Pasta Sauce

2 Tbsp. butter
6 small cloves garlic, peeled and sliced

4-5 cups fresh spinach, washed, steamed, squeezed dry and chopped (or 1 10 oz. pkg. frozen spinach, thawed and squeezed dry)
1 (14 oz.) can artichoke hearts packed in water, drained and chopped coarsely

3 Tbsp. chopped parsley
1 cup ricotta
1 cup Greek yogurt
Salt and pepper to taste

Heat butter in saucepan. Saute garlic slices until light golden, about 2-3 minutes.

Add spinach and artichoke hearts and cook, stirring, another couple of minutes. Add parsley, ricotta and Greek yogurt. Let heat through, and then season to taste with salt and pepper.

Toss sauce onto your cooked pasta and serve immediately with a little extra chopped parsley on top.

Serves 6-8.

In the winter, any frozen, snipped herbs or a dollop of pesto would be a nice substitution for fresh parsley.

I am sending a bowl of this luscious Spinach and Artichoke pasta over to Presto Pasta Nights, a weekly pasta-lover's roundup of recipes, founded by Ruth over at Once Upon a Feast. Ruth is actually hosting this week's Presto Pasta event, so be sure to stop by and see what everyone's cooking up after August 7. You can also shoot Ruth an email if you are interested in hosting an upcoming week.


Cyndi in BC said...

Sounds yummy! Thanks for sharing. :)

Foodycat said...

The spinach artichoke dip is a new discovery of mine - it's delicious, but I think your way over pasta is even better!

Amy Green (Simply Sugar and Gluten-Free) said...

I use yogurt all of the time to replace mayo, sour cream, and even oils. I just posted a vinaigrette & a hummus that both use yogurt instead of oil. I got a little flack, saying there's no reason to reduce the fat. I think it's great. I don't like no fat but lower fat is just fine with me.

Debinhawaii said...

Perfect! I love spinach artichoke dip and I love using Greek yogurt to replace mayo and sour cream too. This looks amazing!

ARLENE said...

Rachel,, this sounds fantastic. I don't like mayo,but I love Greek yogurt. I have made a spinach artichoke dip from a copycat recipe I found online--loads of calories. I would love to try this one.

Ruth said...

Now that is one incredible looking dish. While living in Toronto, some friends and I would meet at Milestones Restaurant for a fancy drink and some of this dip and catch up on each other's lives.

What a great idea to do it over pasta. Thanks for sharing with Prest Pasta Nights.

Susan said...

That looks really, really good! Was just thinking about artichokes recently. You're giving me ideas, Rachel. : }

Minniewdw said...

I got distracted by the Frito-stuffed Oreos. There are times of the month when I crave things like that. :)

No, really, the spinach artichoke pasta sauce sounds yummy, and it'll be creamy enough that my family may not realize how healthy it is! Thanks. Judy

Joanne said...

I could eat spinach and artichoke dip by the gallon! This recipe is definitely getting bookmarked.

The Food Hunter said...

This sounds like a keeper.