Archive of Andrea Potischman

Andrea has written 9 article(s) for InMenlo.

The first time I had spinach dip was in college and it was served in a large hollowed out bread bowl. It was not health food by any means, but I can admit it, the whole thing was delicious.

But that was in the Midwest, I don’t see many bread bowls being served in Northern Cal. Dips (at least the good ones) are not typically healthful, but that’s ok, they are after all for “dipping” not “devouring.“ Parties are the perfect place for dips; quick to make, great for groups of any size and easy for guests to snack on (especially if they’re busy watching a game).

While I appreciate a great spinach dip, I’ve actually come to prefer a spinach-artichoke combo more, the blending of my two favorite dips into one is perfection. Not surprisingly, I recently learned this combination is one of the most searched dips online – I guess others like this duo as much as I do.

The beauty of this simple dip is you don’t need a blender to make it. Rejoice, I don’t say that very often. This crowd-pleasing dip recipe is also packed with some extra veggies to balance the decadence of the dip base itself. Sour cream and mayonnaise make up the standard base in my recipe, but the fresh lemon juice brings out some nice tart flavor which also compliment the earthy artichokes nicely. The bonus, this dip is best when made ahead, this allows the favors to blend more.

There are few ways you can cut the calorie in this recipe if that’s important to you. A low-fat sour cream can be used, just avoid the fat-free version that has lots of sugar and does not have as good of a texture. If you wish to avoid sour cream all together, you can also make it with a whole or low-fat greek yogurt without losing much flavor.

While I don’t serve my spinach-artichoke dip in a bread bowl, I respect that many do. So, if you’re looking for tips on how to make a beautiful edible bread bowl, check out this link to learn how. Bread bowl aside, this is a great, easy, go-to party dip that works equally well with chips or veggies alike.


2 cups packed baby spinach
1 tablespoon Extra Virgin olive oil
1/2 cup quartered artichoke hearts, roughly chopped
1/3 cup sliced water chestnuts, roughly chopped
1 small carrot, finely chopped
1 tablespoon chopped red onion
2/3 cup sour cream
2/3 cup mayonnaise
2 tablespoons grated parmesan cheese
2 tablespoons fresh parsley, finely minced
1 tablespoon freshly squeezed lemon juice
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon black pepper


Step 1: Place a medium sauté pan over medium-high heat. Add the oil and when hot but not smoking, add the spinach and wilt for about 60 seconds. Remove from the heat and let cool.

Step 2: In a medium mixing bowl, add the artichoke hearts, water chestnuts, carrot, red onion, sour cream, mayonnaise, Parmesan cheese, parsley, lemon juice, salt and pepper. Mix well to blend.

Step 3: Now that the spinach has cooled, use your hands to gently squeeze out the liquid from the spinach. Roughly chop the spinach and add to the sour-cream mixture. Mix well to incorporate. Adjust the seasoning as needed.

Former chef and now Menlo Park stay-at-home mom, Andrea Potischman blogs at Simmer and Sauce; photos and text used with permission.

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The Girl + The Fig’s Sondra Bernstein + her famous fig and arugula salad

Chef and restaurateur Sondra Bernstein, founder of Sonoma’s wildly popular wine country farm-to-table eatery the girl & the fig, is this month’s featured Changemaker. Bernstein, whose mantra is “doing one thing is boring,” is someone I have long admired. A one-women show, Bernstein is credited with “putting Sonoma County on the big-league culinary map 20 […]

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Changemaker: Menlo Park superintendent of schools Eric Burmeister

Most in my local community already knows this dynamic community leader: Erik Burmeister is the Menlo Park City School District‘s young and progressive Superintendent. His vision for our schools is creative and thoughtful. I had the pleasure of meeting Erik a few years ago when he was still a middle school principal, and I have been […]

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Changemakers: Dr. Marion Nestle and an arugula salad in her honor

Editor’s note: Former chef and now Menlo Park stay-at-home mom, Andrea Potischman, is launching a new series on her blog Simmer and Sauce called Changemakers. We featured part one of her interview with Dr. Marion Nestle on Feb. 1, and today follow up with the recipe in part two. The post can be viewed in […]

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Changemakers: Dr. Marion Nestle and her favorite arugula salad (part 1)

Editor’s note: Former chef and now Menlo Park stay-at-home mom, Andrea Potischman, is launching a new series on her blog Simmer and Sauce called Changemakers. We feature part one today, which has been edited for length, and will follow up with the recipe in part two. The post can be viewed in its entirety here. A […]

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Moroccan stewed chickpeas with spinach makes the perfect winter meal

Let’s talk about chickpeas and how awesome they are. My older son eats them straight up, a habit he picked up from me. Also called garbanzo beans, these babies are not only delicious, they are packed with protein and vitamins. Although most people think of them as a vegetable, chickpeas are a legume with a […]

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Cranberry-Orange Pistachio Biscotti that I have been making for years

Traditional biscotti, also known also at “Cantucci or Cantucci di Prato,” are Italian almond biscuits, or cookies. The English translation means “twice-baked.” The name is not meant to be clever: You actually bake this well-known Italian favorite twice. A double bake allows you to get the lovely golden hue and crispy texture that goes so […]

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My Mother-in-Law’s delicious pumpkin curry soup – perfect start to Thanksgiving dinner

This is my mother-in-law’s pumpkin curry soup, and it is fantastic. The first time I has this was at Thanksgiving dinner when my husband and I were merely dating. I loved it from the first sip. It is a simple blended soup, but the sweet curried onions elevate this soup to a whole new level. […]

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Just in time for Halloween parties – soft frosted pumpkin cookies

Editor’s note: We welcome a new contributor to InMenlo today, former chef and now Menlo Park stay-at-home mom, Andrea Potischman who blogs at Simmer and Sauce, from which we’ll be drawing her contributions. Frosted pumpkin cookies are a common request by my older son, these and my coconut cake that is. With just a subtle pumpkin […]

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