This sauce made it to my all time favorite recipes ever…I used to cook this initially as a dip but then one day I thought ‘why not add pasta and make it a pasta bake’ and that was a brilliant idea! So if you want to make it into a pasta bake just par cook your favorite pasta add it to the sauce, mix well, transfer to an oven proof dish, top with mozzarella and let it cook till nice, bubbly and golden.
Many recipes out there that require to put together ingredients in a bowl and then baked in the oven and although that might work just fine I found, in my humble opinion, that when you cook the sauce the outcome is so much better. I make this with fresh spinach, chopped and steamed, I then place them in a sieve for a while and squeeze out all the water before adding them to the sauce. A little tip: you can use mascarpone as cream cheese…delishhh!
- 1 medium size onion, finely chopped
- 2 cloves of garlic, crushed
- 1/4 cup butter
- 1 tablespoon corn/olive oil
- 1/4 cup flour
- 2 cups milk
- 115 gr cream cheese, at room temperature
- 1 heaped tablespoon labneh or sour cream
- 1/2 cup parmigiano, grated
- 1 cup mozzarella, grated
- 5-7 frozen artichoke hearts, thawed and chopped into small cubes
- 200 gr spinach, frozen or fresh (if using fresh 200 gr after cooking them)
- Salt and pepper to taste
- 1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
- In a deep, heavy bottom pan on medium heat add the butter and oil.
- Once the butter is melted add the onion and cook till translucent.
- Add garlic and cook for 2 minutes.
- Add the flour, combine everything together and cook to get rid of the floury taste.
- Lower the heat to low and using a whisk start adding the milk, a bit at a time, always whisking to get a smooth sauce.
- Now season the sauce with salt, pepper and nutmeg.
- Now add the cream cheese and mix till melted.
- Add the labneh or sour cream. Combine well.
- Add the spinach and artichoke and mix.
- Add all of the parmigiano and only half of the mozzarella.
- Check the seasoning, transfer to an ovenproof dish and top with the remaining mozzarella.
- Place in a preheated oven on 200 and cook till nice and bubbly and golden!
- Serve with toasted bread or crackers or anything you fancy.