Recipe : Spinach and Artichoke Dip.

So cheesy and so easy.

I’ve made this recipe numerous times for friends and family, and every single time, people go back for seconds/thirds/even fourth servings and the plate is wiped clean. So many people have asked me for the recipe and I’m happy to be able to share it.

It’s super easy and simple, literally anyone can make this. I don’t really use a recipe anymore, I just throw a few ingredients together in a baking dish, mix with my hands and bake away.

The Original Recipe is from Kraft see link: Easy Spinach Artichoke Dip with Cheese. Here is my tweaked version.

  1. 1 can artichoke hearts, drained, finely chopped – don’t rinse the juices off, it adds more flavor, just drain the excess then chop
  2. 1 pkg. (10 oz.) chopped spinach – recipe says use frozen, but why? get some fresh spinach!
  3. 3/4 cup KRAFT Grated Parmesan Cheese – I recommend mixing most of this with the dip, but save a handful to sprinkle on the top
  4. 3/4 cup KRAFT Light Mayo Reduced Fat Mayonnaise   – I don’t use Mayo, I use 3/4 cup plain cream cheese instead
  5. 1/2 cup KRAFT 2% Milk Shredded Mozzarella Cheese I add more cheese because I just love cheese – sometimes Italian five cheese blend in addition to mozzarella
  6. 1/2 tsp. garlic powder – meh skip this step too

Heat the oven to 180°C or 350°F before you start combining ingredients.

Mix your ingredients, use a spoon, or I prefer to use my clean, washed hands.image1

Transfer the mix into a oven-safe baking dish, size doesn’t matter, use what you have available.

Bake for 15 minutes until the top is starting to get golden, then change the oven to broil for 2-5 minutes for an extra crispy top.

While it’s baking, prepare your tortilla chips or cut up pita to eat it with.

Take it out of the oven, let it cool a little bit, grab your friends and family.

(Note – the photo attached is from the first time I made this back in 2012, before my final edits and before I started adding an extra crispy broil to the Parmesan on top.)

Bon appetite, this dish is best served HOT!

This recipe is very versatile, you can add whatever you want to it and I’m sure it’ll come out great. I try to keep it simple and cheesy.

 

 

 

 

Celebrating the First Day of Spring!

#Ritas Ice : First Day of Spring !

Today, one of my work colleagues, told me about Rita’s offering free Italian Ice to customers. I had no idea what Rita’s was so I searched it up and saw that it’s their 25th annual First Day of Spring Celebration!

They offer a ton of Italian Ice flavours which change every day – ranging from Mango (customer favourite and what I got) to Jolly Rancher Watermelon to Sour Patch Kids! They also sell Frozen Custard and Gelati which is frozen custard on the bottom, with a layer of Italian Ice in the middle and a swirl of frozen custard on the top!

It was started in 1984 by a former Philadelphia firefighter who started selling flavoured ice during one hot summer from his front porch. He subsequently opened a store under his wife’s name, Rita, selling Italian Ice often mixed with chunks of fresh fruit. The store is basically famous in Philadelphia and now they’ve expanded to over 100 outlets in 9 states.

Literally every person who I asked about Rita’s, becomes ecstatic and their eyes immediately light up just talking about their favourite ice flavour.  The lady behind me in line started talking to me about how long I was waiting for and then she started asking me where I was from – I told her Canada and that it’s my first time trying Rita’s. She was proud as a Philadelphian to have been attending their first day of Spring celebration for the last 5 years. She explained to me that they have different daily flavours so I asked her what she recommends, without hesitation she said “definitely Mango!” The three younger girls in front of me overheard and added to her comment – they told me to get the Gelati- especially vanilla flavour since it’s “simply the best”.

After waiting in line for about 25 minutes, I took the locals advice and got a Mango Gelati. I have to say – their ice is very smooth.  I was a bit hesitant, thinking that it would taste artificial or have too much sugar, but I was happily taken by surprise. It was delicious and even the gelati was like a yummier version of thick whipped cream. Yum!!! I can’t wait to go back on a hot summer’s day to try another flavour of Italian Ice!

Welcome !

Thanks for visiting the site! 

Who am I?

My name is Yashoda and I’m a 26 year old female physician. I was born in Durban, South Africa (I’m a fifth generation South African!) then after a near death experience – my parents, my brother and I moved to Canada when I was 4 years old – to a very small town called Springdale, Newfoundland. From there, we moved to the Greater Toronto Area when I was 8 and that is my home base. I went to Dublin, Ireland for medical school straight after highschool and I worked for a year in Cork, Ireland. Being in Europe was awesome!!! After that I moved to Philadelphia, USA to do a year of surgical training with UPenn. Currently back in Toronto – Happy 150th Canada!

Where will I go to next? Follow me on my journey.

What is itsYlife.com? Why did I start this? 

Most people who I meet ask me a lot of questions, then they get intrigued with the answers and tell me I should write a book about my life- well this my version, this is my story – welcome to itsYlife.com! ♥

I’m hoping to explore more on this blog as well as inviting you to travel with me to see new cities, try new food and drinks and to invoke conversation by asking you to reply to topics with your own thoughts and opinions.

I’ve decided to have 3 main focuses :

  1. Blog – this will be about my daily/weekly activities, upcoming events, what I’m currently listening to/favourite music, new items that I love and how you can get them, and including random chats with strangers or things I’ve overheard from other peoples conversations (hehe).
  2. Travel – Here, I will be featuring cities/hotels/attractions – join me on my adventures! So far, I’ve been to 31 countries and visited 95 of 250 global attractions (so many more places to see!). I really believe that travelling expands your horizons and being immersed in different cultures truly enriches your life. I’ve gained lots of perspective and it is the best way to really appreciate your surroundings and admire our beautiful home, planet Earth.
  3. Food & Drink – Yum, I’m hoping this will make you hungry! – I’ll be posting reviews of cafes/restaurants and also posting recipes, with photos of course! I love to cook and bake and my taste testers usually give me two thumbs up, so I’d love to share as food feeds your soul and as the saying goes “the way to a man’s(/woman’s) heart is through their stomach”!.
  4. Beauty – working in collaboration with my mom, Arlini, to review and explore skincare and makeup, hair and nails! I was always attracted to makeup & nails growing up but skincare is a new area that we are now addicted to! Be sure to follow for the latest reviews of products!
Come on this journey with me!
Thanks for reading/sharing/following.