Monday, May 31, 2010

40. Artichoke-Cheese Spread

From 2004 Southern Living Annual Recipes

This was my other contribution to today's cookout...and it was my kind of appetizer. It was easy to put together, could be assembled ahead of time, had a pretty presentation, and tasted great. It was incredibly addictive!

The ground red pepper in the cheesy artichoke mixture gave it some kick, tempered by the cream cheese. I walked away from this for about 15 minutes, and it was half gone when I came back through the kitchen. I'd count that as a success!

2 (8-ounce) packages cream cheese, softened
1/4 cup finely chopped green onion tops (I omitted)
1 (14-ounce) can artichoke hearts, drained and finely chopped
1 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese
2 garlic cloves, pressed
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 tablespoon lemon juice
1/2 teaspoon ground red pepper
3/4 cup bottled roasted red bell peppers, drained and chopped

Stir together cream cheese and green onions, blending well. Set aside.

Stir together artichoke hearts and next 5 ingredients.

Spread one-third of cream cheese mixture on bottom of a 4-cup glass bowl lined with plastic wrap. Layer with half of both chopped peppers and artichoke mixture. Repeat, ending with final third of cream cheese. Cover and chill at least 2 hours.

Invert onto a serving plate and remove plastic wrap.

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