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Rounder Pale Ale Spinach Artichoke Dip

When we started talking about another Brewmasters Four Course meal for the fall, I really wanted to bring in some classic dishes but elevate them a bit, and of course add some beer into the mix! Fall to me is about warmth, savory, sharing and the use of cheese and cream with no regrets! For this first course of our four-course Fall Variety Pack meal, the classic recipe turned Blue Moon was a great version of Spinach and Artichoke dip. One of my favorites, but also an easy recipe to get ruined by the use of too much mayo. The recipe below is fairly easy, just a small cooking trick of making a Roux (flour & butter) to help thicken the dip is essential for the right texture. In this particular instance, I added the beer with the flour to help bring out some of those great beer flavors as well as reduce the amount of liquid in the beer. The Belgian Style Pale Ale was an excellent fit for this idea. The sharpness of the hops pairs great with cheese and something salty. One of the bigger changes I instilled on this classic recipe was the use of Gruyere. A wonderful melting cheese that brings so much aroma and taste to the dish it makes you want to go back for 3rds, 4ths and 7ths! A great starter to a meal, and also a great appetizer for any sporting event! Enjoy.

Method


Preheat oven to 350* Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Stir in the spinach and cook until bright green, about 30 seconds. Drain and rinse under cold water; squeeze out the excess moisture, then chop. Melt the butter in a large saucepan over medium heat. Add the onion and garlic and sautee until onions are translucent, about 3 minutes. Add the flour and stir for about 1 minute. Whisk in the milk & beer and cook, whisking until thickened. Remove from heat and stir in the sour cream, Worcestershire and spices (salt, pepper, paprika) and mix well. Add cheese to this and mix until cheese is melted and fully incorporated. Finally add in the spinach and artichokes and fold in. Transfer to baking safe dish and cover with remaining Gruyere and Parmesan. Bake at 350 for 25-30 minutes, until cheese is bubbling and starting to brown. Remove from heat, let cool and serve with baguette slices.