Wednesday, July 30, 2014

Artichoke & Spinach Dip

For those of you who have been bugging me about the recipe - here it is. Sheesh! :)

1/4 C plus 2 TBS oil (I used a light olive oil)
1/4 C all-purpose flour
2 C milk
Cayenne Pepper
1/2 C shredded Parmesan (about 2 oz)
1/2 C shredded Monterey Jack/Cheddar mix (about 2 oz)
1 C chopped onions
1 (9 or 10-oz) bag fresh spinach, stemmed, rinsed and chopped
1 TBS minced garlic
2 (15 oz) cans artichoke hearts, drained and julienned

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees.

Combine 1/4 C of the oil and flour in a saucepan over medium heat. Stir the mixture constantly for 5 to 6 minutes for a blond roux. Whisk in the milk and bring the liquid up to a boil. Season the liquid with salt and cayenne. Simmer the liquid for 5 to 6 minutes, or until the liquid is thick and coats the back of a spoon. Remove the sauce from the heat and stir in the cheeses. Set the sauce aside.

In a saute pan, heat the remaining 2 TBS of oil. When the oil is hot, add the onions and saute for 2 minutes. Stir in handfuls of spinach at a time until all of the spinach is incorporated. Add garlic and artichoke and saute for 2 minutes. Season the vegetables with salt and cayenne. Remove from heat and turn into a mixing bowl. Fold the cheese sauce into the vegetables. Turn the mixture into a baking pan. Bake dip for 10-15 minutes, or until the top is golden brown.

Serve the dip with chips.

adapted from a Food Network recipe

Wednesday, June 18, 2014

Batman? Well, not quite.

A month and a half ago, I was on the phone with my mom, standing in our basement going through a box, when all of a sudden something started flying around. Our basement ceiling is pretty low and it was flying pretty fast, so it was difficult to tell for certain but I was pretty sure it was a bat. I made a mad dash for the stairs, screaming the whole time, trying not to run into the damn thing. I slammed the door to trap it.

As soon as I got upstairs I hung up with my mom and called Ronnie at work. I told him there was something in the basement - a bat, a bird - it was flying around and I wasn't going back down there until it was out! When he got home he went downstairs, armed with the leaf blower. I went to the bathroom and closed the door. What? You thought I was going to help? After about a half hour of effort, he declared me crazy and the basement to be free of all things flying. For nearly a week and a half I slowly creeped into the basement every single time I went down there. I inspected the rafters and hurriedly completed my tasks. I was not taking chances. I KNEW what I saw and I didn't want to see it again. I eventually started to think that perhaps I WAS crazy or maybe it had found it's way out. Whatever the case....good riddance!


This evening Ronnie went to the basement and my bat friend dive-bombed HIS head! Karma. Not only did he have to admit that I wasn't crazy, he had to get the damn thing out. (You didn't think I was going to do it, did you?) By the time he went back down stairs it was crawling around on the floor - malnourished and I think they almost gave each other a heart attack. He finally got it in a towel and out the door. It wouldn't even fly away. He had to go out a few minutes later and shake the towel again to get it to fly away.

A bat. In our basement. FOR ALMOST TWO MONTHS!!! You can't make this stuff up, people.

Tuesday, June 17, 2014

A Change is Gonna Come

It's been over a year since I last posted. A lot has happened in my life - some exciting things, some things I could've done without, but life keeps going. That's how it works, right? You roll with the punches and keep going?

In the past year:
  • I've had a relapse
  • Ronnie and I made the decision to not have children (a story for another day)
  • I started a new part-time job
  • I gained another niece and 2 more nephews - well, one is still refusing to come out and play (looking at you ELI!)
  • Ronnie and I bought a house! WHAT?!?!? (lots of stories about home ownership already)
  • I gave up church for lent (pretty sure I need to write a book)
  • this list could go on for a while...quite a lot has happened
I have thought frequently about blogging. It's more therapy for me than anything else and I've needed some therapy during the last 13 months! I've come to believe that people who think they don't need help in some form are crazier than I am (and that's saying something).

So, I don't know how frequently I'll post or what I'll post about. Worship is still near and dear to my heart, so you may get post related to that periodically. I may post some of the recipes for dishes I fix when people come to visit for all of you who are constantly wanting me to cook you something. If you actually want ME to cook it, you have to come and see me! 

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