Americans know Cob Loaf Spinach Dip as a spinach dip in a bread bowl. In New Zealand and Australia, it is known simply as a cob loaf. It is just as popular Down Under as it is here in the States.
You can easily vary this recipe by adding chopped ham or bacon, various types of shredded cheeses, and/or your favorite herbs. It is delicious served as a party appetizer, but some folks make a meal of it.
If you are not a fan of spinach, it may be omitted, but hollow out less of the loaf. (Of course, with no spinach, it is your basic melted cheese dip. Still good!) This recipe is best made with 1 large cob loaf, but can be made to stretch to 2 small loaves.
Cob Loaf Spinach Dip Recipe
1 large loaf (or 2 small loaves) unsliced rustic or artisan bread
1 pound (2 x 250g packets) defrosted frozen spinach (or equivalent fresh spinach, blanched and chopped), optional
1 (30g) packet of dry onion soup mix
1 cup mayonnaise
1 cup sour cream (may use light)
8 ounces (250mg) cream cheese, at room temperature
3 scallions (green or spring onions), finely chopped
1 cup of shredded cheese of choice
Curry powder to taste
Preheat oven to 350 F (180 C). Line a rimmed baking sheet with foil.
Cut a “lid” from the top of the loaf. Hollow out the center, retaining the pieces for dipping later.
Press out any excess liquid from the defrosted spinach. Combine spinach, dry onion soup mix, mayonnaise, sour cream, cream cheese, scallions, shredded cheese, and curry powder to taste. Pour into the center(s) of the loaf (loaves). Replace the bread lid.
Bake 15 to 20 minutes until center is hot and melted. Do not over-bake or the bread may become too crusty and hard. (The loaf may be microwaved if the center is not completely hot and melted.)
Serve cob loaf with the retained bread pieces from the center, plus additional crackers of choice for dipping.
Yield: about 8 servings
Recipe Source: Traditional recipe as made by Shirl Brain, New Zealand
Cob Loaf Spinach Dip Recipe Photo ©2021 Peggy Filippone