Photos and Words by Julianna Flamio
Okay, so I am going to have a very Forrest Gump moment and list all the ways I love artichokes, (not shrimp–that I can talk about some other time): grilled, spinach and artichoke dip, artichoke hearts tossed with pasta or in a salad, marinated artichoke hearts and stuffed artichokes. The latter is by far my favorite way to eat an artichoke. Every Thanksgiving, stuffed artichokes dominate all the other sides on my plate. Yes, even stuffing. Stuffed artichokes are really not as fancy as they sound, they are just bread crumbs, grated cheese (parmesan or pecorino romano), olive oil and water. Plus, my family’s recipe is quite easy to follow and very inexpensive. Cooking life-hack: buy pre-seasoned Italian bread crumbs so you don’t have to spend the extra time or money on making your own. Stuffed artichokes are great as a gourmet snack, side or main dish. More importantly, they are fun to eat. Individually tear off the leaves and pull the bread crumb, grated cheese and olive oil mixture with your teeth. Do this until you get down to the heart and toss out the leaves. If you’re in the mood for a more indulgent stuffed artichoke then check out this recipe on Epicurious, which calls for soppressata and provolone cheese.
Family Recipe: Stuffed artichokes
Prep time: 10 minutes
Cook time: 1 hour
Two baby artichokes
2 1/2 tablespoons of olive oil (estimated measurement)
2 cups of water (estimated measurement)
1 cup of pre-seasoned Italian bread crumbs (I used Progresso brand)
2 tablespoons of grated parmesan cheese
- Pull old leaves off the artichokes around the base.
- Cut off the stems so the artichokes are able to sit upright.
- Trim points off all the leaves.
- Wash the artichokes by spreading the leaves apart.
- In a separate bowl mix the bread crumbs, grated cheese and olive oil.
- Transfer the mixture to a pan and sauté on medium heat in order to toast the bread crumbs. Do this until the bread crumbs turn golden brown.
- With a teaspoon scoop the mixture into the pockets between the artichoke leaves.
- Place the artichokes in a pot and fill with water until it reaches halfway up the sides of the artichokes. Do not submerge them completely in water.
- Drizzle olive oil on the tops of the artichokes. Note: I used extra virgin olive oil.
- Bring the pot to a boil on medium heat. Then lower the heat and cover the pot.
- Periodically baste the artichokes as they simmer on low heat. Note: they are done when the artichoke leaves turn dark green and become tender enough to easily pull off.