I just got back from a week-end “get-away”, and I have to tell you..two days at a charming B & B is every bit as restorative as a seven day cruise. My favorite little retreat is a beautiful inn on Tybee Island in Georgia named the Beachview. It is run by the most down to earth, hard working, gracious woman I have ever met. Karen welcomes you as if you were a member of her own family. Each room is painted in soothing tropical colors, furnished with antiques and decorated with local art. Karen who, along with her husband Frank, owns the completely restored 1915 home, has thought of every detail from the thick bathroom towels and rugs, to the hand crafted soaps and the fabulous food her chef prepares. This lovely B&B is the perfect backdrop for a low key week-end. Strolls on the beach and morning bike rides to the lighthouse are usually the most strenuous demands we place on ourselves. Saturday evening we decided we were too lazy to go out to dinner so we simply filled our glasses with wine and our plates with veggies, crackers and baked artichoke dip. We retreated to our cozy room and played gin and rummy, stopping only once for a quick run back upstairs to load up on more of the tasty snacks. Who would have thought we could be completely happy with nothing more than ” dip and a deck?”
Getting away for a week-end of relaxation is truly a revival for both body and soul. Being able to unplug from every day stressors and totally unwind in a relaxing, nurturing setting is a gift. Whether it’s with your spouse, a sister, a friend or by yourself, I heartily recommend it!
We bumped into chef Erin setting up the buffet breakfast on our last morning there, ( egg and sausage strata & cuban french toast-yes, it was crazy good.) I told her how much we had enjoyed her artichoke dip the night before. Without hesitation, she took me straight into her kitchen, pulled out a folder and shared the recipe with me.
Southern hospitality.. ain’t nothing like it.
Baked Artichoke and Spinach Dip
1/2 cup shredded mozzarella
1/2 cup dairy sour cream
1/2 cup mayonnaise
1/2 cup parmesan cheese
pinch of salt, pepper to taste
pinch garlic powder
1- 14oz can artichoke hearts, rinsed, drained and coarsely chopped
1 cup chopped spinach leaves
( OR one box thawed, frozen spinach that has been well drained by squeezing-chopped.)
1/2 cup finely chopped green onion
Mix first three ingredients.
(If you aren’t a big fan of sour cream, reduce to 1/3 and increase mayo to 2/3.)
Add 1/4 cup parmesan, salt, pepper, pinch garlic powder.
Stir in veggies, then spread into a 9 inch pie plate-lightly sprayed with pam.
Sprinkle with remaining parmesan.
Bake at 350* until heated through and lightly browned.
Serve with pita chips, french bread or crackers
Wine and a deck of cards-optional
(Can be assembled up to 24 hrs ahead and refrigerated. Takes a little longer to cook when chilled. My friend Kristen substituted some cream cheese for a portion of the sour cream and mayo, added about 2 tsp fresh minced garlic, and used marinated artichokes instead of those in the can..Loved the results.)