Warm Rapini, Artichoke and Oka Cheese Dip

Warm Rapini and Artichoke Cheese Dip

A twist on the classic, this Warm Rapini and Artichoke Cheese Dip features rapini, artichoke hearts and French-Canadian OKA Cheese. It also has a secret ingredient that makes it 2/3 lighter than that other dip!

This post is sponsored by Andy Boy. As always, all opinions are my own. Thanks for supporting companies that support Seasons and Suppers!

This delicious dip is full of great flavours, starting with wonderful rapini. The rapini brings wonderful flavour to this dish and by using mostly leaves, the nutty flavour of the rapini prevails. Rapini is in season now and is a great source of vitamins A, C and K, as well as potassium, calcium and iron.




Rapini

Added to the rapini is artichoke hearts, both pureed and then with some chunks stirred in before baking, for texture. Next comes the wonderfully fruity and nutty Oka cheese, Parmesan, a bit of sour cream and ricotta cheese and finally, white kidney (cannellini) beans. Yes, beans! The kidney beans are roughly pureed with the rest of the dip ingredients to add some fibre and creaminess to the dip, without adding a lot fat and calories.

The addition of beans is brilliant really and I defy you to know they are even there. And I’m sure you’ll be happy to know that the addition of beans results in a dip that is 2/3 lighter than the usual cream cheese and mayonnaise version.

I think you’ll love this fabulous combination of flavours. Serve this dip with crostini or cut vegetables, such as carrots, broccoli and cauliflower.

Warm Rapini Artichoke and Cheese Dip

Cook’s Notes for Warm Rapini and Artichoke Cheese Dip

Substitute widely available Emmenthal cheese for OKA cheese, if needed.




Be sure to drain your wilted rapini well. I like to press with a folded paper towel. You’ll avoid adding too much moisture to your mixture that way.

Be sure to add salt and pepper, as needed, to really bring all the flavours together.

This dip has about 20 calories per tablespoon.

 Warm Rapini Artichoke and Cheese Dip

 Warm Rapini Artichoke and Cheese Dip

Warm Rapini, Artichoke and Oka Cheese Dip
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Warm Rapini, Artichoke and Oka Cheese Dip

Delicious, lighter version of the classic dip, using rapini and French-Canadian OKA cheese. If you can't find OKA in your area, Emmenthal is a great substitute.
Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 35 minutes
Total Time 55 minutes
Servings 8 people
Calories 80 kcal

Ingredients

  • 1 bunch rapini (broccoli rabe)
  • 2 14oz/398g cans artichoke hearts, drained, DIVIDED
  • 3/4 cup rinsed and drained canned cannellini (white kidney beans)
  • 1/2 cup ricotta cheese
  • 1/3 cup sour cream
  • 1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese
  • 2/3 cup grated OKA cheese, DIVIDED (or substitute Emmenthal cheese)
  • 1 Tbsp olive oil
  • 2 tsp lemon juice
  • 1 Tbsp minced garlic (about 2 cloves)
  • Salt and pepper, as needed

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 350° F.
  2. Prepare the rapini: Rinse the rapini, but don't dry. Cut the rapini bunch 2-3 inches from the top, removing and discarding the stem ends. (You're trying to get mostly the leaves and very little of the stem). Place rapini in a large pot on the stove-top over medium heat. Cook, stirring, until rapini is wilted, about 3 minutes. Place wilted rapini into a fine mesh strainer and press well to remove as much moisture as possible. Set aside.
  3. In a food processor, combine the rapini, 1/2 of the artichoke hearts, the kidney beans, ricotta cheese, sour cream, Parmesan, 1/2 of the OKA cheese, olive oil, lemon juice, garlic and a bit of salt and pepper. Process until almost (but not completelsmooth. Transfer to a bowl. Roughly chop the remaining artichoke hearts and stir in. Taste mixture and add additional salt and pepper, as needed to heighten the flavours.
  4. Spoon mixture into an 8 or 10-inch cast-iron skillet (or similar size oven-safe dish). Top with remaining OKA cheese.
  5. Bake in preheated 350° F. oven until quite bubbly, about 35 minutes. If you'd like to brown up the top a bit, pop under the broiler for a few minutes at the end of cooking.

  6. Serve warm with crostini or cut vegetables, such as carrots, broccoli or cauliflower.
 

Warm Rapini Artichoke and Cheese Dip
 

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32 Comments

  • So many fabulous flavors going on in this recipe, I wouldn’t miss those extra calories at all — and I love the light in the photos, it really sets the Happy Hour mood — I’m sitting here craving a glass of wine and some of this wonderful dip.

    • Thanks so much, Sue and I swear, you wouldn’t know the beans were there (if I didn’t just tell you ;)

  • Wow, Jennifer, I’m loving the flavors in this dip and these photos are out of the is world! I’ll definitely be making this and enjoying with some wine and good friends.
    Don’t you just love those OKA commercials about the couple trying to smuggle the cheese out of Quebec? lol

    • Thanks Mimi and yes, OKA is just a central Canada thing. I think Fontina would be nice in this (melts so beautifully!)

  • Beans are such a fabulous way to make a dish creamy without adding all the calories! Gotta love kitchen secret weapons! This dip looks AMAZING, Jennifer! Loving all the fresh vegetables in here! I’ve never heard of Oka cheese before, I’m going to have to look to see if any store around here sells it. Totally want to face plant into a big ole vat of this cheesy deliciousness! Cheers, friend!

    • Thanks so much, Cheyanne :) Unfortunately, OKA cheese is a Canadian thing, so would be surprised if you found it. BUT! Emmenthal is a great alternative and widely available.

  • This looks lovely. We don’t have rapini here in Australia, but could I substitute baby broccolini or even a pack of thawed and very well drained frozen spinach? I love recipes with white beans. I often make a smooth puree from 2 cans of rinsed white beans, the cloves from a large head of slowly roasted garlic, olive oil, a splash of lemon juice and plenty of seasoning. It’s really healthy (as well as being incredibly cheap and simple to make) but it tastes remarkably delicate and complex. I use it on antipasto platters, as a dip, or warm as a side/sauce for chicken but it might have some competition for my affections after I’ve made this one of yours!

    • Thanks Chris :) Pretty much any green would be nice in this dish. Kale or chard would work nicely, as well. And yes, the beans were really such a nice addition to this dish, in terms of adding a creamy texture and took on the flavours of the other ingredients nicely.

      • Made it. Loved it. I used spinach in the end and it worked perfectly. I divided the mix into two smaller dishes. We shared the first one as an appetiser. My son loved it so much he ate the second one for dinner last night and then he plastered the cold leftovers onto sandwiches this morning!

        • So glad you all enjoyed it! It’s a great dip and I love that the beans make it great for any time enjoyment :)

  • This looks like the ultimate comfort food appetizer, I love the addition of beans! Rapini is one of my favorite vegetables, I always pick some up when I spot it at the market.

  • What a gorgeous dip, Jennifer. It’s impossible to find rapini here I’ve been on the lookout for ages. I am sure Oka cheese makes this dip extra delicious!

    • Thanks so much, Julia. So sad that you can’t find rapini. But this dip would be lovely with any green you like!

    • I think this would be quite fine put together ahead. Just cover well so it doesn’t dry out in the fridge, then bake up (probably would take a few minutes longer, if it’s cold from the fridge). Enjoy!

    • Hi, I’ve made this several times now because my son adores it and it’s far healthier than an ordinary cheese dip. I made one lot in advance and it was fine. I also divided a batch and froze the second half which later thawed and baked perfectly. It’s very forgiving and very versatile.

      • Thanks for confirming, Chris. I hadn’t made it ahead myself, but thought it would work well. Good to know it does and great to know it freezes well, too!

    • Wanted to report back and I can assure you this recipe holds up to make ahead preparation. Not realizing how much one batch makes, I not only made earlier in the day and cooked that evening, but I also ended up freezing the rest of the batch. I unthawed in the fridge and this too turned out just fine.

      I ended up using Chimay a La Biere because that was what my husband come home with from a local store that had Oka on their website but then reported they hadn’t carried it in 9 years. Not sure how far off that cheese was, but I think it needed more intensity (and was difficult to shred because it was too soft). While I thought the dip was good (and different), it lacked a wow/flavor factor and I am blaming my cheese choice. I will try it again another time and use the recommended Emmanthal, or maybe even Gruyere. And the next time my husband is in Canada, he will be smuggling home some Oka.

      • So glad to hear it is so make-aheadable! I also loved how re-heatable it was. We enjoyed it over several days, re-heating it all each time and it seemed to be just as nice as the first time we re-heated it :) And yes, I think the cheese is the key. It really does need an assertive cheese. Emmanthal or Gruyere would work nicely and smuggled OKA, good too ;)

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