Saturday, January 31, 2004


This one's for Linkmeister, who says, "I'm going to a Super Bowl party Sunday, and as usual (the same group has been gathering for these things for 13 years) I'm supposed to bring chips and dip. Now, it's easy enough to get a bag of Doritos and a bag of Ruffles, a jar of salsa and a tub of clam dip, but I'm tired of that. I need a dip. Not just any dip pulled off the 'Net, but a dip you've made and you and your guests have enjoyed. One that isn't too complicated and doesn't require Fedex packages from France to get the ingredients... This dip needs to feed no more than ten people, nearly all male, and there are also going to be other forms of food." So my suggestion is:

Spinach Dip
1 10-ounce package frozen chopped spinach, thawed
1 8-ounce can water chestnuts, chopped
1 cup mayonnaise
1 cup sour cream
½ cup chopped fresh parsley
½ cup chopped scallions
1 clove garlic, minced
Salt and pepper to taste

Okay, first thing is, eff the fresh parsley crap, who has time. According to this page, "If you want to substitute dried herbs in a recipe that calls for fresh, the conversion is simple. Reduce tablespoons to teaspoons; two Tablespoons of fresh oregano equals two teaspoons dried. Ginger is an exception to this interchangeable rule. If a recipe calls for fresh ginger, you cannot substitute ground. The flavors are completely different." (Which by the way I consider kind of bullshit, as my fresh ginger just dried up so I have to use the ground stuff in my Chicken a la Elayne tonight so there, nyah and all that. But I digress.) So ½ cup, that's 8 tablespoons, which means 8 teaspoons of ground parsley, which means in practicality you'll probably want to use less, maybe 4-5, 'cause it's parsley, it's a friggin' boring pretentious herb in the first place. Okay, onward:

Drain spinach and squeeze dry (paper towels, colander, whatever). In a bowl, combine dip ingredients; season with salt and pepper; Chill 8 hours or overnight. Adjust seasoning before serving (again, whatever). That's it. All you're chopping are the garlic clove and scallions and water chestnuts. To me, the water chestnuts are really what gives this dip its special flavor. My suggestion, if you have lots of hungry folks, is to double all the 'gredients to make a good chunk o' dip. Except for the parsley. 'Cause, you know, it's friggin' parsley.

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