Sauteed spinach can be an incredibly flavorful side dish. When combined with mascarpone, Parmesan, and lots of great seasoning, it transforms into an indulgent dip.
As opposed to a light bite that you can pop into your mouth right before the main course, this recipe is perfect for those times when a roast is slowly baking in the oven. As creamy and delicious as a baked version, it won’t take valuable oven space away from your main meal. Another advantage of a stovetop dip is that you easily can cook it until it reaches your desired level of thickness. Keep a close watch on the pan, and remember all that goodness will continue to thicken as it cools.
1 tablespoon butter
2 tablespoons olive oil
½ teaspoon chopped garlic
5 ounces baby spinach
2 teaspoons lemon juice
3 dashes Worcestershire sauce
¼ teaspoon salt
¼ teaspoon black pepper
2 pinches nutmeg
2 pinches cayenne pepper
4 ounces mascarpone
¼ cup grated Parmesan
Since this is a stovetop recipe, I prefer to eat it all in one sitting rather than wind up with leftover dip that has to be reheated in the oven. It makes a good amount as an appetizer or snack for two people and can be scaled up according to your needs. When you crave more, I recommend firing up the skillet to make it fresh so you can gather around a sizzling bowl.
Start by melting the butter in a large skillet over medium heat. Add the olive oil, and once it has heated, saute the garlic just until it becomes fragrant Next add the spinach to the skillet and cook until wilted.
Remove the skillet from the heat, and gently squeeze the spinach with the back of a wooden spoon to release its liquid. Leaving the liquid in the skillet, transfer the spinach to a cutting board, and roughly chop it. Return the spinach and any liquid on the cutting board back into the skillet over medium heat, and add the lemon juice, Worcestershire sauce, salt, pepper, nutmeg, and cayenne. Allow the ingredients to come together, and then add the mascarpone and Parmesan.
Once the mascarpone hits the skillet, it will begin to melt. Cook until the dip bubbles and thickens, stirring frequently to make sure the ingredients are well-combined. Since it will thicken further once removed from the heat, turn the heat down or off just before the dip reaches your desired consistency.
Spoon the dip into a bowl and serve with your favorite bread or crispy pita chips. Pumpernickel is especially delicious with spinach dip, and you can never go wrong with slices of crusty French baguette.