Every Bulldog belle knows hosting a proper Georgia tailgate party requires plenty of the following: fabulous food, great libations, team spirit and most important of all good company. We had all that in abundance when my book club recently gathered at the lovely Athens home of Sara Hughes.
Let us share some of Sara’s offerings and our favorite recent books here for your inspiration.
- Chicken Salad and BBQ from GeorgiaBob’s Barbecue Company in Warner Robins
- Callie’s Charleston Biscuits Cast Iron Spinach Artichoke Dip
- Spicy Pecan Cheese Dip from Southern Living’s September issue.
- Smoky Snack Mix from Southern Living’s September issue
- Crudites and Ranch Dip
- UGA Cupcakes from Rosanne Frazier of Warner Robins.
- UGA Cookies from The Hayneville Hostess.
We got on quite a WWII historical fiction journey and here are some of our shared favorites:
- Lilac Girls by Martha Hall Kelly, All the Light We Cannot See by Anthony Doerr, We Were the Lucky Ones by Georgia Hunter, Beneath A Scarlet Sky by Mark Sullivan, The Alice Network by Kate Quinn
Some of our recent favorites:
- Cheri Leavy – Whiskey in a Teacup by Reese Witherspoon
- Hannah Groseclose – Rules of Civility by Amor Towles
- Apryl Hughes – Prince of Tides by Pat Conroy
- Sara Hughes – I Am Charlotte Simmons by Tom Wolfe
- Lindsay Lucas – The Nightingale by Kristin Hannah
Callie’s Charleston Biscuits Cast Iron Spinach Artichoke Dip
- 1 pound (12 ounces) frozen spinach, thawed and squeezed dry.
- 2 cans artichoke hearts, drained and chopped
- 1 small onion, chopped
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 cup mayonnaise
- 1 block cream cheese, room temperature
- 1 cup shredded Parmesan, plus 2 tablespoons for topping
- 1 teaspoon crushed red pepper
- Juice of half a lemon
- ¼ cup fresh parsley, chopped
- 10 to 12 Callie’s Buttermilk Biscuits
- 3 tablespoons breadcrumbs
Preheat oven to 375. Using a stand mixer or handheld mixer add the cream cheese and beat until smooth; scraping down the sides. You can also mix by hand. Add in the spinach, artichokes, onion, garlic, mayonnaise, parmesan, crushed red pepper, lemon juice and parsley. Mix until just combined. Using a 10 or 12-inch cast iron skillet, place the dip in the middle of the skillet. Place the biscuits all around the edges of the dip. Top with remaining 2 tablespoons parmesan and ¼ cup breadcrumbs. Bake for 30 minutes covered with foil. Remove the foil the last 10 minutes. Cook until biscuits are golden brown and the dip is bubbling. Remove from oven and let sit for 10 minutes. Serve and enjoy!