Appetizers and Snacks, Dips, Sauces and Spreads

Caesar Asparagus Artichoke Dip with Grilled Crostini

Loreto June 19, 2017

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Caesar Asparagus Artichoke Dip with Grilled Crostini, is a mouth-watering, cheesy, incredibly flavorful warm dip using the Litehouse Caesar Dressing.

Song of the day: “Bon Appetit” by Katie Perry.

Caesar Asparagus Artichoke Dip with grilled crostini

[This post is sponsored by Litehouse. We have been monetarily compensated but all opinions are our own.]

Caesar Asparagus Artichoke Dip with Grilled Crostini combines charred seasoned asparagus and steamed artichoke hearts, with a fresh creamy Caesar dressing. The incredible flavour of the garlic and Parmesan of the dressing provides a solid foundation for all the flavours to mingle, and slathered on a nice grilled crostini gives you an appetizer that will be a hit at any one of your social gatherings.

 

Caesar Asparagus? Usually, when we think of Caesar we automatically think romaine and a salad, which is great, especially when we want something fresh and healthy. I don’t know about you but here at Sugarlovespices we always buy fresh, organic, and foods that don’t have all those preservatives and are not processed to death. When it comes to dressings we would rather buy something that is fresh and kept in the refrigerator, than going to the condiment isle and getting a highly preserved room temperature bottled dressing.  The produce is always fresh and organic and I would not want to put anything but freshness on it, that is why, when we are not making our own dressing, we reach for any fresh-tasting, refrigerated and delicious Litehouse dressings, located in the refrigerated section of the grocery store. In this day and age, it is important to us to use good quality ingredients, that gives us peace of mind and a feeling of health and fortitude.

We were asked by Litehouse to create a fun, tasty, creative recipe using their fresh dressing. There were a lot of ideas floating in the creative cloud, but one idea stuck in my mind after tasting the Caesar. Immediately I was thinking of a dip, but not just your norm spinach or cheesy dip, something that would highlight the Litehouse Caesar dressing and also use a vibrant seasonal produce that would pair perfectly with the dressing, to create somewhat of an appetizer.

Caesar Asparagus Artichoke Dip with grilled crostini

Well, a trip to the farmers market has our basket full of wonderfully fresh ingredients, one of which are asparagus, and then some green onions, garlic, and jalapeno peppers. I wanted to combine the asparagus with another vegetable besides the green onion, and jalapeno and artichokes came to mind. It is hard in our area to find good artichokes, so I opted for the canned, but a better quality one, that I know will have the flavour to back up the star of the show.

Caesar Asparagus Artichoke Dip with grilled crostini

Knowing all the flavours and wanting to kick it up even a few more notches, I decided not only to steam the asparagus, but marinate them in seasoning and olive oil, and char them on the grill. This will bring a bit of smokiness to the mix, which I think will go well with the array of flavours that we have. The list goes something like this:

  • Litehouse Caesar dressing,
  • fresh garlic (core stem removed),
  • jalapeno,
  • green onions,
  • steamed artichoke hearts,
  • that lovely charred asparagus,
  • olive oil,
  • some seasonings to elevate this dish,
  • some more fresh grated Parmigiano Reggiano and an Alpine cow’s milk cheese. This is going to melt nicely and create that gooey, creamy, spreadable texture we want.
  • Oh ya, don’t forget the crusty baguette!

Caesar Asparagus Artichoke Dip with grilled crostini

I used a food processor to blend all the ingredients to get it creamy and smooth. The aroma emanating from the processor has me wanting to taste the dip even before baking it and wow, what a flavor punch. I can only imagine that when all those flavours meld together in the heat of the oven forming that nice cheesy baked top, this is going to be perfect with a crusty crostini.

Caesar Asparagus  Artichoke Dip with Grilled Crostini, into the oven you go!

This Caesar Asparagus Artichoke dip baking in the oven smells so delicious. We used a nice heavy baking dish to bake the dip in. This will ensure a nice even heat. I smell the Caesar with that garlic and parmesan filling the kitchen. The dip bubbling nicely on top and a quick broil to get that crust golden and brown, and out of the oven, it comes to cool a bit.

Caesar Asparagus Artichoke Dip with grilled crostiniCaesar Asparagus Artichoke Dip with grilled crostini

There was a dilemma in the presentation. If I wanted to keep it simple I could just leave it alone, but the artist in me wanted to garnish the dip with some of the asparagus tips and slivers of sun-dried tomato. I was quite pleased with the look. What do you think simple or artistic? You decide, that is the beauty of freedom, to do what you truly wish, either way it was amazingly delicious especially with these toasted crostini that I did on the grill.

CAESAR ASPARAGUS ARTICHOKE DIP

The flavor is magnificent. The Caesar dressing providing some acidity with the garlic and parmesan in that creamy silky smooth texture. The asparagus comes through with those wonderfully grilled and charred bits, along with the richness and velvetiness of the artichokes. The freshly grated cheeses provide those fun stringy strands that we all love so much to play with, and that jalapeno creeps up ever so slightly saying “hello” to your taste buds.

This dip is a great party dish that is fun to eat and will have your guests intrigued and interested in what all those flavours are, and how well they balance each other out, and the Caesar Asparagus combination is a match made in heaven.

So asparagus is in season and a quick trip to the grocery store to get all the ingredients especially that fresh, no preservative, Caesar dressing made by Litehouse located in the refrigerated section of the produce area. Remember: Cold is where it’s Sold!

Get to creating this wonderful Caesar Asparagus Artichoke Dip with Grilled Crostini!

Song of the day: “Bon Appetit” by Katie Perry.

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Caesar Asparagus Artichoke Dip with grilled crostini

Caesar Asparagus Artichoke Dip with Grilled Crostini

  • Author: Loreto
  • Prep Time: 10 minutes
  • Cook Time: 30 minutes
  • Total Time: 40 minutes

Description

Caesar Asparagus Artichoke Dip with Grilled Crostini, is a mouth-watering, cheesy, incredibly flavorful warm dip using the Litehouse Caesar Dressing.


Ingredients

  • 1 cup Litehouse Caesar dressing
  • 25 Asparagus, washed and bottom end trimmed
  • 1 can steamed artichoke hearts, quartered
  • 7 green onions, chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic (core stem removed)
  • 1 jalapeno pepper, chopped fine
  • 1 Tbsp mayo
  • 1/2 cup fresh grated Parmigiano Reggiano
  • 1/2 cup fresh grated alpine cow’s milk cheese (or soft cheese of your choice)
  • 1/2 tsp smoked paprika
  • Generous pinch of fresh cracked black pepper

Marinade for asparagus:

  • 1 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • Dash of garlic powder
  • Pinch of salt and pepper
  • Sprinkling of onion powder
  • 1 Tbsp freshly squeezed lemon juice

Crostini:

  • 1 french baguette, cut in rounds
  • Some olive oil for brushing

Garnishing (optional):

  • 1 sun-dried tomato, slivered
  • Some of the charred asparagus tips that were reserved

Instructions

  1. Take asparagus and cut off about 2 inches (roughly 5 cm) of the end.
  2. Wash asparagus well and place in pot of boiling water with the tips facing up.
  3. Cook for about 3 minutes, take out and place in a dish.
  4. Drizzle with olive oil.
  5. Sprinkle garlic powder, onion powder, minced garlic, salt and pepper.
  6. Squeeze some lemon juice and let sit for about 1 minute.
  7. Heat up barbecue to about 400° F.
  8. Place asparagus perpendicular to grate on grill.
  9. Grill for 1 minute and turn over and continue grilling for an additional minute, or when char marks appear on asparagus. Take off grill and set aside.
  10. In a food processor combine, Litehouse Caesar dressing, mayo, green onion, garlic, artichoke hearts. Pulse until mixture starts to form.
  11. Add in asparagus leaving a few tips aside for garnishing, and pulse some more until mixture becomes smooth.
  12. Add in the paprika, the pepper, and pulse again to incorporate the spices.
  13. The final stage: sprinkle in the Parmigiano, and cow’s milk cheese and blend until cheese is well incorporated and a creamy texture is achieved.
  14. Place mixture into an oven safe heavy baking dish.
  15. Place in a pre-heated 400° F oven and bake for about 20 minutes, or until top is bubbling.
  16. Take out of oven and let cool a bit.

Crostini:

  1. Slice baguette into 1 cm rounds.
  2. Brush both sides with olive oil.
  3. Place on a 400° F BBQ and grill till they become a light golden brown on each side (apprpx 1-2 minute a side).

Garnishing (optional):

  1. If going for the artistic presentation, arrange on top of the dip the asparagus tips and the slivered sun-dried tomatoes. Enjoy!

Nutrition

  • Serving Size: 8-10 people
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Caesar Asparagus Artichoke Dip with grilled crostini

[This post is sponsored by Litehouse. We have been monetarily compensated but all opinions are our own.]

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11 Comments

  • Avatar
    Reply pepperspennies June 20, 2017 at 7:50 pm

    Guys, this looks amazing! I have been playing around with the Litehouse dressings, too and am loving the simplicity of the dressing with it’s strong and fresh flavours. I know sun dried tomatoes tend to get the eye roll these days but they are still one of my favourite things to garnish with so I am so happy to see you added them in there 🙂

    • Loreto
      Reply Loreto June 21, 2017 at 12:27 pm

      Thank you, it was a decision process the garnishing, but I believe if you make it beautiful the it is intriguing to try, and if you try it , it may be so good that it will inspire you to try making it. The litehouse dressings were amazing to work with and we have some more creative ideas coming in the near future, stay tuned!
      Have a wonderful week!
      Loret

  • Avatar
    Reply GiGi Eats Celebrities June 21, 2017 at 7:37 am

    Creamy ARTICHOKE & ASPARAGUS dip! I don’t know how to say YES faster!!!

    • Loreto
      Reply Loreto June 21, 2017 at 12:25 pm

      Hi GiGi, I am smiling at your enthusiasm, it is contageous, and we are so greatful that you enjoyed this pesto recipe. If you were closed, Nicoletta and I would hand deliver some asap! lol
      Happy cooking!
      Loreto

  • Avatar
    Reply Flavour and Savour @flavourandsavour.com June 23, 2017 at 9:26 am

    I can see this dip getting DEVOURED at my next party!

    • Loreto
      Reply Loreto June 26, 2017 at 11:39 am

      Hi Elaine
      Thank you for commenting. Would love to hear your guests comments on the dip. I loved it and so did my family and friends.It had so many flavors working in balanced harmony. Have a great gathering and a wonderful week.
      Cheers:
      Loreto

  • Avatar
    Reply Dawn @ Girl Heart Food June 24, 2017 at 7:42 am

    What an awesome way to use the Caesar dressing and I do love me a good dip, especially with crusty bread (oh, and let’s not forget the wine 😉 ). This looks creamy and just what hubby and I would love to eat on Friday or Saturday night! Pinned! Hope you guys are having a wonderful weekend!

    • Nicoletta
      Reply Nicoletta August 22, 2017 at 9:24 am

      Thank you Dawn! Yes, let’s not forget the wine 🙂 ! This dip is creamy dreamy, we’re sure you you’d love it as much as we did!

  • Avatar
    Reply Justine @ JustineCelina.com June 26, 2017 at 10:39 am

    Yum! I’m a big fan of Litehouse products, but never would have thought to use a Ceasar dressing in such a creative way! Everything about this looks scrumptious, indulgent and comforting. 🙂 Great recipe!

    • Loreto
      Reply Loreto June 26, 2017 at 11:35 am

      Thank you Justine. I love creativity and using products to creat as you said indulgent and comforting food. The ceasar dressing worked so well in hightening the flavor of the dip in such a respectful foundational way. Thank you for taking the time to check out this recipe, we truly appreciate it.
      Have a great week Justine!
      Cheers!
      Loreto

    • Nicoletta
      Reply Nicoletta August 22, 2017 at 9:26 am

      Thanks Justine! We’re big fans too and in this dip the dressing worked wonderfully. This dip is truly scrumptious! 🙂

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