Spring Vegetable and Goat Cheese Dip

serves 8-10

1 cup 1/2-inch pieces asparagus

2 Tablespoons unsalted butter

1 medium leek (white and pale-green parts only)

1 large clove of garlic, minced

2 Tablespoons all-purpose flour

1 1/4 cups whole milk

4-ounces sharp white cheddar

Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper

1 (14-ounce) can chopped artichoke hearts in water, drained

1/4 cup fresh (or frozen, thawed) peas

2 Tablespoons chopped fresh chives

2 Tablespoons chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley

1/2 teaspoon finely grated lemon zest

1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper or to taste

4 ounces fresh goat cheese, crumbled and divided

Preheat oven to 450° F. In a large pot of boiling salted water, cook the asparagus until crisp-tender, about 2 minutes. Drain; let cool.

 In a medium saucepan, melt the butter over medium heat. Add the leeks and cook, stirring often until soft, about 10 minutes. Add the garlic and cook, stirring until fragrant, about 2 minutes. Whisk in flour and cook, stirring constantly, about 2 more minutes. Gradually whisk in milk, stirring constantly. Bring to a simmer, whisking constantly. Cook, whisking occasionally until thickened; remove from heat. Add cheddar; whisk until cheese is melted and mixture is smooth. Season to taste with kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper. Fold in asparagus (reserve tips), artichoke hearts, peas, chives, flat-leaf parsley, zest, cayenne pepper and half (2-ounces) of the fresh goat cheese. 

Transfer mixture to a 4–5-cup baking dish and set on top of a rimmed baking sheet.  Arrange asparagus tips on top and dot with the remaining (2-ounces) goat cheese. Bake until golden brown and bubbling, 15–20 minutes. Let rest for 5-10 minutes before serving. Serve with crostini.  Enjoy!

Printed from thegalleygourmet.net