Monday, May 19

My little week of BIG adventure!

Hello friends!

So, last Thursday evening I was on the phone with my darling sister and we were talking about Mother's day and how sad it was that I couldn't be in Texas to spend the day with my mom.

Now, I need to preface this story with the fact that I had partaken of a few glasses of wine BEFORE said conversation with my sister.

Well, somewhere in that conversation, we decided it would be a FABULOUS idea if I, Kathryn, were to fly from NORWAY to TEXAS to surprise our mother for Mother's day. It seemed like a really great idea and I admit, we got pretty fired up! There was a flurry of credit cards and phone calls, and suddenly, I was booked to fly to TEXAS. On Saturday, which was about 24 hours away!!!

It was CRAZY. After I got over the initial shock that I had actually BOOKED tickets to fly to Houston, my sister and I started laying the groundwork for Operation Surprise.

Long story short, it was a long flight, my sister picked me up from the airport, we went to Outback Steakhouse where my sister had arranged to meet my mom and stepdad Chuck, for dinner. I was ALL nerves! I couldn't believe that we had actually pulled this off. So we are sitting in the bar and my back is to the door. They arrive, and Kindel gets up to say hello and suddenly I stand up and turn around and say 'Mind if I join you for dinner???'

It was a moment of sheer beauty my friends!! The look on my mother's face was priceless. The utter SHOCK. The confusion. The tears. The JOY!!!!

I still can't believe we pulled it off!!! We had a GREAT time. As the few days passed, I realized how much I NEEDED to be there. To be with my sister and my mom. It was so good for me! We had a whirlwind week of eating, shopping, hanging out and just fun and 5 days later, I turned around and came back to Norway!

So that was my little week of BIG adventure!!

One thing I love about going back to the states is the FOOD! So many choices and so much GOOD stuff! I ate my share of Tex Mex! Last night here in Oslo, I started craving Spinach Artichoke dip. I didn't make it to Houston's Restaurant to have some this trip, so I decided to whip some up as a kind of closure to my whirlwind trip.

Spinach Artichoke Dip

As usual, all ingredients are approximate, if you need exacts, just pop on over to Recipezaar, where the worlds recipes are!

About 4 cups of fresh spinach
Can of artichoke hearts (drained and chopped)
About 1 cup finely grated white cheddar cheese
1/2 cup grated parmesan cheese
1-3 garlic clove, minced, to taste (or more)
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup low fat cream cheese
1/2 cup low fat sour cream
A few tablespoons of skim milk

So, take your artichokes and chop them up in small chunks:

Then grab your spinach. You can use frozen, but I just love fresh:

Chop it finely and throw it in a dry pan and saute it:

I told my husband last night that I really felt that spinach was a dishonest vegetable. Without fail, I am ALWAYS amazed at how it shrinks! Seriously! Like 5 cups of spinach cooks down to about 3 tablespoons! Ok, maybe not that much, but it is ridiculous! So, after your 3 cups of spinach has reduced itself, add it to the artichokes:

In a mixing bowl, combine the cream cheese, the sourcream, the milk, salt and garlic and about 3/4 of the cheeses and mix it up until it is well combined:

When that is smooth, add your spinach and artichokes to the mixture and stir well:

Put it all in an ovenproof casserole dish and top it with the remaining cheese and pop it into a 375 degree oven for about 20 minutes:

Now, usually this dip is served with tortilla chips, but I am trying to shrink myself in time for our beach vacation, so I decided on pita chips. Well, this being Norway, we don't have pita chips, but we do have pita bread. So, I took 3 pieces of whole wheat pita and split it and quartered it:

Put them on a baking sheet and spray them with Olive Oil Pam and sprinkle them with sea salt:

Bake those at about 400 for about 15 to 20 minutes, or until they are golden brown and crisp, flipping them half way through.

So simple and so delish:

Want a bite??


Patty said...

What a great surprise for your mom! How fun for you all! And, that dip sounds really yummy. I must make it.

Donna said...

What a nice surprise for your mom! I get goosebumps just thinking about it. How special!