No Dip Artichoke Spinach Tortellini

If you know me, likely you know I don’t / can’t / won’t eat anything that resembles mayo, sour cream, yogurt, and the like. After avoiding cheesecake for some 18 years of my life, I realized that not all white stuff is bad, but I still have never tasted artichoke or spinach dip, although It seems to be at every bridal shower / pot luck I have ever attended. I guess the idea of never indulging in said dips inspired me to create this dish… that and the HUGE bag of baby spinach I took home from the market the other day. I also stopped by the Italian market for some divine homemade tortellini stuffed with a cheese blend, thus the no dip artichoke spinach dish.

I started this sauce with a simple roux equal parts whole wheat flour and butter (about 2 tbsp each) in a sauce pan over medium heat, stirring constantly with a metal whisk this roux should start to brown, then add about 1 cup of milk  or cream, along with 1 tsp grainy mustard, and fresh grated nutmeg, 1 minced garlic clove, S+P, and some dried organic lemon peel. Stir until the sauce is nice and thick, and then add ribbons of artichokes (from 1 small jar or the other half of a large can after making the below tofu dish) and a handful of a grated firm earthy cheese, parm would be fine, but I have just discovered Nostrala made in the Kootenys and aged in caves, it is FABULOUS  this is what I used for this dish.

Cook fresh pasta for 5 minutes or so. In a large strainer place 4 handfuls of baby spinach, and strain your pasta water right over the fresh spinach, and quickly add the cheese and artichoke sauce, toss and serve! This has got to be better than some mayo dip at a pot luck!


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