Today was just one of those days. I woke up with a slight hangover from partying way too hard with my Grandma and Grandpa. (Yes, you read that correctly. They get lit especially when it’s $5 martini night at our local steakhouse.) I couldn’t find anything to wear. Haley, my bestie who always helps me do my makeup, was out of town. And my dang hair was being so annoying that I almost went full Britney Spears, 2007 edition.
It wasn’t pretty. And to top it all off, when I got to Black Dolphin Inn to film for the Food Network today, the mother effing health inspector was there, going through my fridges and talking to my dad about our menus. To be totally clear, this health inspector was a true angel. She was kind and nice and didn’t make my flight or fight reflexes kick in. Not that we’re doing anything wrong, but anytime anyone with that sort of authority is around me, I get so freaked out! Maybe it was all of those years of religiously avoiding the high school campus cops or instinctively slamming on my breaks when i see a cop driving, but this sort of weird aversion has always stuck with me.
Luckily for me, my mom, boyfriend, dad, and other bestie and sous chef, Katie was there to help me get my life together. Not only were we cleaning up after a packed breakfast, but the Food Network Iphone wasn’t charging and I was getting all sorts of flustered. All of a sudden my boyfriend comments that we have 10 before we’re live and like that, the nerves kick in! If I didn’t have my support group, I would have loved to hide in the stairwell and eat all the carbs I could until I felt better, but yeah, that didn’t happen. With their help, we somehow managed to get our shit together and go live right on time!
Yeah, sure, I might have forgotten a few ingredients (whoops) but whatever, it’s all dust in the wind at this point. What matters is that we’re halfway through National Grilled Cheese Month and because I want everyone celebrating to their full potential, I just had to share this ridiculously delicious spinach artichoke grilled cheese sandwich!
So let’s get started!
You can watch the video on the Food Network’s Page in higher res, or watch it below:
-FOR THE SPINACH MIX-
- 2 cups cooked spinach, excess liquid drained off
- 1 clove black garlic, smashed
- 2 tbsp caramelized shallots
- 1 cup marinated artichoke hearts, chopped fine
- 2 cups ricotta cheese
- 1/2 cup shredded Wisconsin Mozzarella
- 1/2 cup Italian Wisconsin Cheese Blend
- 2 tbsp crumbled Feta cheese
- 1 tsp garlic powder
- 1 tsp salt
- 1/4 tsp red pepper flakes
-FOR THE GRILLED CHEESE-
- 2 slices Sara Lee Artesano Bread
- 4 slices Wisconsin White Cheddar
- 2 tbsp spinach artichoke mixture
- 2 pats salted butter
-FOR THE SPINACH ARTICHOKE MIX-
- Mix spinach, black garlic, artichokes, and shallots together and stir in ricotta. Mix in the mozzarella, the Italian cheese blend, the feta, and the garlic, salt, and red pepper flakes. Set aside.
-FOR THE GRILLED CHEESE-
- Turn your panini press to medium heat or heat a cast iron skillet to medium-high heat. Meanwhile, build the sandwich by placing 2 slices of white cheddar onto one slice of bread. Add two spoonfuls of the artichoke mix and top with the remaining two slices of cheese. Place the top piece of bread on top and butter the exterior of the sandwich. Grill until both sides are beautifully crispy and golden and all the cheese has melted.
- ***And if you have to much spinach artichoke dip – Add a little mayo or sour cream to the mix until it’s consistency is a little looser than before. Then put the mix in a oven safe dish and bake until creamy and bubbly!