Stuffed Artichokes
Stuffed artichokes are one of the most common ways of eating artichokes in Italy.  We are providing
you two different stuffing recipes for artichokes and two different methods for preparing them.

Native to the Mediterranean, the artichoke is harvested year-round, but more than half of the crop is
harvested between March and May.  The Fall crop usually peaks in October.  The 'vegetable' that we
eat is actually the plant's flower bud.  Most people cook the whole artichoke and slip each petal, one
by one, through their teeth until they reach the tender heart which is entirely edible.    If you're
intimidated by this unusual-looking vegetable, you're not alone.  But once you learn the simple
procedure, preparing artichokes is easy.
Trimming an Artichoke: Add the juice from half a lemon to a large bowl of water.  Cut off the artichoke's stem or peel the stem if it is a tender baby artichoke.  Depending on the recipe, peel off all or some of the outer leaves starting from the bottom up.  Use a serrated knife to cut off the entire top one inch of the artichoke.  Gently separate the top leaves and look into the bottom of the artichoke to find the fibrous choke in the center.  Use a spoon with a serrated edge or a melon baller to scoop out the choke.  Rub the artichoke all over with lemon juice and drop it into the lemon water.  Drain before using.

Steaming Artichokes:  Place whole, trimmed artichokes into a steamer basket or on artichoke steamer racks and place into a deep saucepan with about 1 inch of water in the bottom of the pan.  Bring water to a simmer, cover, and cook for 25-40 minutes depending on the size of the artichoke.  Artichokes are done when the leaves pull of easily.

Boiling Artichokes:  Boiling is the common way of cooking artichokes.  Place whole for halved trimmed artichokes in water so that the artichokes are almost covered.  Add flavorings such as lemon, garlic cloves, and herbs to the water.  Simmer 25-40 minutes depending on the size of the artichoke.  Artichokes are done when the leaves pull off easily.

Microwaving Artichokes:  Place trimmed artichokes stem up in a deep microwave-safe bowl.  Add 1-2 inches of water and cover bowl with plastic wrap.  Cook on high
7-10 minutes for medium artichokes and 12-15 minutes for jumbo artichokes.  Keep covered and let the artichokes rest for 5 minutes before serving.

Roasting Artichokes:  Cut trimmed medium size artichokes in half lengthwise.  Place cut sides down on an oiled roasting pan.  Sprinkle with a few tablespoons of water and cover tightly with foil.  Roast in a 375 degree F. oven for 30 minutes or until tender.  Season with salt.
RECIPES
Artichokes Stuffed with Bread Crumbs, Olives, Parmesan, Capers, and Herbs
Artichokes Stuffed with Bread Crumbs, Salami, and Provolone
Ingredients:

4 large artichokes
1 cup dried bread crumbs
2 tablespoons finely chopped black olives
2 tablespoons grated Parmesan cheese
1 garlic clove, minced
1 tablespoon chopped fresh parsley
1 tablespoon chopped fresh basil
1/4 teaspoon dried oregano
1 tablespoon chopped capers
Pinch of red pepper flakes
Salt and pepper
Olive oil
4 teaspoons grated Parmesan for topping

Directions:

Trim the artichokes as described above, removing only the tough bottom leaves
and snipping the ends off the others.  Leave the artichokes in the lemon water
while you prepare the stuffing.

To make the stuffing: 
For the dried bread crumbs we recommend starting with fresh bread crumbs. 
Process a few slices of leftover Italian bread in a food processor.  Place on a
micro-safe plate and heat on high at 1 minute intervals.  Stir the crumbs
occasionally.  Remove when they are dry and crisp.

Preheat oven to 375 degrees F.
In a bowl, combine the bread crumbs, olive, Parmesan, garlic, herbs, capers,
red pepper, salt and pepper.  Add some olive oil (4 to 6 tablespoons) gradually,
stirring until combined and moistened.  Spoon the stuffing into the center of the
artichokes until filled to the top.  Place the artichokes in a baking dish. Add
enough water to the dish to cover the bottom halves of the artichokes.  Cover
the dish with foil and bake 1 hour.  Artichokes are fully cooked when you can
easily pull out a leaf.

Remove from the oven and increase the heat to broil.  Remove the foil and top
each artichoke with a teaspoon of Parmesan cheese.  Place under the broiler
until the topping is browned, about 2 minutes.  Place on a serving platter and
spoon a little of the juice from the baking dish over each. Serve whole or cut in
half vertically.
Artichokes Stuffed with Breadcrumbs, Salami, and Provolone
Artichokes Stuffed with Breadcrumbs, Olives, Parmesan, Capers, and Herbs
Artichokes Stuffed with Bread Crumbs, Olives,
Parmesan, Capers, and Herbs
(Serves 4)
Artichokes Stuffed with Bread Crumbs, Salami, and Provolone

(Serves 6)
Ingredients:

6 medium artichokes
2 cups seasoned bread crumbs (recipe below)
1/2 medium onion, finely chopped
2 garlic cloves, finely chopped
2 tablespoons grated Parmesan cheese
4 ounces hard salami
4 ounces provolone or other hard cheese
Olive oil


Directions:

Trim the artichokes as described above, removing only the tough bottom leaves
and snipping the ends off the others.  Leave the artichokes in the lemon water
while you prepare the stuffing.

To make the stuffing: 
You can use packaged seasoned bread crumbs or use the recipe below.
Place the bread crumbs, onion, garlic, and Parmesan in a bowl.
Put the salami and provolone in a food processor and process until finely
chopped.  Add the salami and provolone to the bread crumb mixture.
Add a little olive oil just to moisten the mixture and help to hold it together.

Put some of the filling into the center of each artichoke and stuff some of the
filling between some of the leaves.  Place a steamer basket or artichoke
steamer racks into a deep saucepan with one inch of water.  Bring the water to
a simmer.  Place the stuffed artichokes in the steamer basket.  Drizzle a little
olive oil over each artichoke.  Cover the saucepan and steam the artichokes
over the simmering water for about 45 minutes. Test for doneness by pulling a
leaf from an artichoke.  Remove the artichokes from the pan and allow to cool
for 5-10 minutes before serving.
 
 
 
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VEGETABLE ENTRÉES  >  STUFFED ARTICHOKES
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HOME DECOR
NEW ITALIAN COOKBOOKS
KEEP YOUR
ARTICHOKES FROM
FALLING OVER
The holders provide the perfecr place to sit your artichokes while cooking or for serving. They keep the artichokes from falling over in the water and also makes it easier to remove them from the pot.