Monday, April 1, 2013
A = Ambergris and Artichokes
The first thing I would like to do is say thanks to the man who started A to Z and who is a blogger par excellence himself, Arlee Bird. Thank you so much Arlee, we bloggers are all grateful to you.
There was a story in the news last January about people finding Ambergris on the beach. Basically it is sperm whale vomit which has floated in the oceans for a long while and hardened whilst it hung around, eventually ending up on a beach. It’s worth a fortune to the perfume industry as it works as a stabiliser for perfumes. The piece found in January was worth €100,000 which is quite a nice chunk of change. Some people walking an Australian beach found a 32 lb. lump which was worth $295,000, not sure whether that was Australian currency or American. Oh to live near a beach. I remember, as a kid, hunting for amber on the British beaches, not ambergris though. Ambergris is nicknamed ‘floating gold’, one can see why.
I served this dip at a get together I had just before Christmas and one of my guests really went nuts on it. I think it is delicious too. I first got the recipe from Laila at a party we held quite a few years ago for all the Ontario cookery group who had met on the internet.
1 cup (250 ml) mayonnaise
1 cup (250 ml) shredded mozzarella
1/2 cup (125 ml) freshly grated Parmesan cheese
1 Tbs (15 ml) grated onion
1/4 tsp (1 ml) hot sauce, or to taste
1 clove garlic, finely chopped
Salt and freshly ground pepper to taste
1 14-oz (390 g) can artichoke hearts, drained and chopped
Paprika to taste
Combine the mayonnaise, mozzarella, Parmesan, onion, hot sauce, garlic, salt, and pepper in an electric blender or food processor and process until smooth. Add the artichokes and place in a small baking dish. Sprinkle with paprika and bake in a preheated 350F (180C) oven for 20 minutes, until bubbly. Serve warm with crackers or toasted pita bread triangles.
Serves 8 to 12.
Have a great day