Wild “Spinach-Artichoke” Dip with Burdock and Lamb’s Quarters
This rich, cheesy dip is a perfect way to use two common "weeds" in the garden that are at their peak in late Spring and early Summer. Harvest the burdock when it is sending up a large central stalk (these can be varying height and thickness depending on the plant), but before it has started sending out the smaller flower stalks that appear later on. If you can easily slice through it and the stalk doesn't look hollow, it should be at the right stage for eating. Once blanched, burdock stalk has a slightly sweet, buttery flavor that is a great stand-in for artichokes in this classic dish. If you don't have lambs quarters in abundance spinach will do just fine, of course (though we think lambs quarters taste even better).
- 3-4 burdock stalks
- 1 lb lambs quarters (substitute spinach)
- 8 oz cream cheese, softened
- 1/3 cup sour cream
- 1/4 cup mayonnaise
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- 2 cups mozzarella cheese, shredded
- 1/3 cup parmesan, grated
- 1 pinch salt and pepper
- With a pairing knife, peel the tough outer layer off of the burdock stalk to expose the bright green flesh underneath. With the knife or a vegetable peeler, remove the stringy green flesh of the stalk until only the smooth inner core remains.
- Roughly chop the burdock stalks into 3-4 inch pieces and blanch in salted boiling water until tender, about 3 minutes. Remove and let drain.
- Blanch the lambs quarters or spinach for about 30 seconds then rinse with cold water in a colander and let drain.
- Mix the sour cream, mayonnaise, cheeses and garlic together until well-combined and smooth. You can also use a hand mixer for a more homogenous texture.
- Chop the burdock stalks into bite-sized pieces and add to the other ingredients.
- Squeeze as much water out of the lambs quarters or spinach and chop finely, then add to the other ingredients and mix well.
- Transfer the mixture to a cast iron skillet or casserole dish and bake at 350 Fahrenheit until bubbly and starting to brown on top, about 20 minutes.