"The best times you are going to have in life are at the dinner table and in bed." Old Italian saying. So relax, and enjoy the simple things!


Foodie Friday: Stuffed Artichokes Demystified


stuffed artichokes
Stuffed Artichoke 2012

When I was about five, I was watching a kid’s show called, Wonderama. Are you old enough to remember this show? Well, they had a segment called, “Mystery Item.” and the kids had to guess what it was. On this particular day the mystery item was an artichoke. I called to my mom, “Can you believe it an artichoke? Who doesn’t know what an artichoke is?” I was shocked at how few kids know what it was, never mind how to eat it. So if you were one of those kids that was sadly not exposed to the wonders of artichokes read on and I will demystify them for you.
by Diane Balch
prep time: 20 minutes servings: 4
4 large artichokes
2 eggs
1 teaspoon anchovy paste (remove if making meatless)
1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese
pinch salt and pepper
1 teaspoon minced garlic
1/4 cup minced fresh parsley
1 cup dry white wine
2 cups bread crumbs (home made is best you can use Aleia's gluten-free Italian bread crumbs)
1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
6 cups of water
1 tablespoon salt
1) Cut off the top and the stem of the artichoke. Remove any dark leaves. Trim any leaves that are very spiky. 
Artichoke before it has been cut.
Top and stem removed.
2) Pry open the artichoke. Create space between the leaves so stuffing can fit all around.
Opened artichoke.
3) In a large mixing bowl beat the eggs with the anchovy paste. Add Parmesan, garlic, parsley,  salt and pepper to the mixture, incorporate.
4) Mix bread crumbs into egg mixture.
5) Divide bread crumb mixture into 4 equal parts.
6) Open up each artichoke and stuff it with a quarter of the bread crumb mixture.
Stuffing the artichoke.
7) Put the stuffed artichokes in a large sauce pan.
Artichokes in large sauce pan.
8) Add water and wine, 1 tablespoon of salt, and olive oil to the sauce pan. This liquid should submerge about 3/4 of the artichokes.
9) Put a lid on the pan and bring it to a boil. Lower heat to medium and simmer for about 45 minutes.  Check that most of the artichokes are submerged with water. Every 15 minutes you may have to add more water. 
10) The artichokes are cooked when you can easily scrap the bottom of the inside of a leaf off with your upper teeth. 
Eaten leaves.
11) Continue to eat the leaves like this until you get to the center. The delicate leaves you can eat whole. When you get to the spiny part that connects to the base of the artichoke remove this with a spoon and discard it. The soft base of the artichoke is the heart. Enjoy it whole... it is the best part. 
copyright 2012

The underside of these leaves are spiny.

Removed top leaves, exposing spiny area.

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  1. My husband loves artichokes, but they scare me to cook, lol. I do love a good spinach artichoke dip though. I'll have to show him this recipe and see if he wants to make it.

    1. Artichokes are a real love hate kinda of vegetable. My husband and son hate them. Anytime they are away for Boy Scouts, my daughter say, "Can you make artichokes tonight." Tell your husband to try it... you can make this recipe for one.

    2. oh yeah, my husband can eat a whole artichoke all by himself. I usually have a piece or two, it's just the cooking part that I can't seem to master. His always turns out better.

  2. I like artichokes! I can't put html code in my article, but will add a link in the comment section. Thanks.

  3. They look divine. I love the addition of anchovie. I just learned how to cook artichokes this year when I grew them for the first time. I didn't try stuffing them so thanks for the tips.

    1. The anchovy really makes the flavor pop. I hope you enjoy the stuffing.

  4. Oh I love artichokes! I'll be making these.

  5. I've never actually cooked an artichoke but I love eating them! I like the idea of stuffing them, and your photographs are really helpful for someone who hasn't prepared them before. Thank you for sharing this excellent post and delicious recipe.

    1. You are very welcomed. I figured that most people have not actually prepared artichokes themselves. I'm glad the photos are helpful. It really isn't hard once you do it once.

  6. I grew up eating artichokes too, but I have never seen a recipe for stuffed artichokes. So i still learned something. Your recipe looks fabulous!

    1. If you already like the taste of them your in for a treat having them stuffed. Enjoy.

  7. This is what we in Italy would call more or les the "Roman stuffed artichokes" (of Jewish origins) but there also exists another version which is the "Sicilian (or Southern) version" with vegetable broth... as you can see here http://incucinacongioia.blogspot.it/2012/03/carciofi-ripieni.html

    the problem is the recipe is in written in Italian (do you speak a little Italian?? or dou you need a translation?? let me know if you need it)

    1. I can translate it with Google translator... thank you so much. Very, interesting about the Jewish origin. One of my grandmother's is from an area in Calabria that supposedly has a fair number of Jews.


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