Artichoke Spinach Dip

This dip is exceptionally creamy and flavorful, and yet it contains no vegan cheese substitutes or oil. It will be a hit at any party! Makes 3-3½ cups!

¾ cup raw cashews (unsoaked)
1-2 medium-large cloves garlic, sliced or quartered, to taste
¾ tsp. sea salt
½ teaspoon dry (ground) mustard
Freshly ground black pepper to taste
¾ cup plain unsweetened nondairy milk (see note)
2½-3 Tbsp. freshly squeezed lemon juice
2 cups frozen artichoke hearts, partially thawed (helps for pulsing in blender; see note)
2 loosely packed cups fresh spinach leaves

1. Preheat oven to 425 degrees F.
2. In a blender, add cashews, garlic, sea salt, mustard, black pepper, milk and lemon juice (use the full 3 tablespoons for tanginess). Blend until very smooth. (If using a Blendtec or other high-powered blender, this will only take a minute or so. If using a standard blender, keep blending until very smooth.)
3. Add the artichokes and spinach and just pulse through; do not fully blend, in order to keep some chunky texture! Transfer to an ovenproof baking dish (a loaf pan or similar size), and bake for 17-20 minutes, until lightly golden on top.

Serving Suggestions:
This is the perfect party dip, served with sliced baguette or warm pita breads.
Sliced red bell peppers and the inner (small and crisp) leaves of romaine also make great dippers!

-Use unsweetened almond or soy milk for best flavor.
-Frozen artichokes are preferred, but you can substitute canned if needed. Just rinse well and drain before using.

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