Being an expat in China often means forgoing many of your favourite foods. That’s why every time we go on vacation we come back 5 pounds heavier! We stuff ourselves with cheeses, olives and breads that we just can’t seem to find here. Bread! Crazy isn’t it? Keep in mind that it’s the westerners who have brought traditional bread to China. Expats are the ones demanding it, but the expat population is just a drop in the bucket when you look at the whole of Shanghai. It’s easy to fine sliced bread, it’s not Wonder Bread but there are lots of bakeries and grocery stores who have fresh sliced American style bread. Baguettes are easy to find too.
It’s the specialty breads that I miss. Especially Sourdough. The bakery near my house has it. I ordered it once.
It did not have that distinct sourdough bread taste and it was gummy. Nope. Not sourdough.
So you get used to going without, until one fateful day when you find yourself staring at a loaf of perfect, beautiful Sourdough Bread at Jiashan Market. It was Bon Pain’s last one, so I grabbed it!
I brought it home and we devoured the entire loaf, dipping chunks of bread into a Minestrone Soup and eating slices with cheese and chutney. Heaven!
At the last Jiashan Market I planned ahead. I texted Aurielen from Bon Pain and asked him to set aside a loaf for me. Due to scheduling conflicts he wasn’t going to the market this time. I was crushed. Devastated. Lucky for me Aurielen is awesome and sent over a loaf of Sourdough to another vendor to pass on to me.
I’ve been in the mood for a bread bowl dip. It’s something I eat when I go back home. At least one party that I attend will have a hollowed out bread stuffed with some sort of dip concoction. I was tired of making rice, noodles, blah blah dishes for dinner. So I whipped up a Chicken Artichoke Dip in Sourdough Bread Bowl.
The combination was killer! The sourness of the bread with the cheesy goodness of the dip was fantastic! I ate more than I probably should. No not probably. I did.
But in case you need an extra testament to how good the bread was, let me tell you what my daughter said. My Middle Nomad was picking at her bread, making quite the mess. I told her to eat properly for heavens sake! And she said, I can’t. This bread is so good! So she grabbed a spoon (like a normal person!) and ate the Chicken-Artichoke Dip then gnawed away at the bread like a squirrel after a long hibernation.
We ate all of it! But let me clarify who ate it all. Mr. Nomad is out of town and my Littlest Nomad stuffed herself on snacks while watching Toy Story 2.
It was just me and my two Nomads who took down this monster of Chicken Artichoke Dip in a Sourdough Bread Bowl!
With that being said, I’m off to Zumba!
A distinct tasting Sourdough Bread makes this Chicken Artichoke Dip the perfect party dish or even dinner!
- 1 Sourdough Bread
- 1 Cup Cooked Shredded Chicken
- 1/4 Cup Sour Cream
- 2T Mayo
- 2 1/2oz Cream Cheese
- 1/4 Cup Shredded Parmesan Cheese, divided
- 1/4 Bell Pepper, finely chopped
- 1 Garlic, finely chopped
- 3oz Jarred Artichokes (drained)
- Freshly Crushed Black Pepper
- Preheat oven to 400F
- Hollow out the top of the sourdough bread. Cut the top into small bite sized pieces for dipping into the dip.
- Mix together the remaining ingredients, but leave aside a little bit of Parmesan Cheese to sprinkle on top.
- Stuff the mixture into hollowed sourdough. Top with extra Parmesan Cheese.
- Bake for 20-30 minutes or until the dip mixture is warm and the Parmesan is golden brown.
- Sprinkle green onions on top and serve warm!
(*Disclaimer, if you live in the French Concession, there are lots of good bakeries down there. I don’t live in the FFC, so my bakery options are rather limited)