Wednesday, June 12, 2013

Marinated Artichoke Hearts

My artichoke plant is making back my original investment this year.  Even if baby 'chokes are only a dollar, I've broken even.

Two were threatening to bloom at the same time.  I wanted to do something different than just steam them.  I went trolling around several canning sites (and entered a few contests along the way), but those recipes were for "putting up" several quarts at a time.  I merely wanted them flavored for a salad or snacking with cheese.  We're talking barely two servings here.

Saveur had a recipe that seemed to address my needs.  Since the original recipe uses frozen artichokes (which are available at specialty grocers like Trader Joe's or Whole Foods), I've made a couple of small adjustments for fresh.  I'm also scaling up again, just double this time.
Normal-sized lemon, small artichokes

4 small artichokes
1 lemon
1/2 C olive oil
1 tsp kosher salt
1/2 tsp thyme
1/2 tsp oregano
dash cayenne pepper

It's just not fair
1.  Cut lemon in half.  Squeeze the juice of one half into a small bowl of cold water and toss in the rind.  Trim artichokes down to the pale, soft leaves and heart.  Cut in half and scoop out the thistle if they're too mature (a tomato corer is great for this).  Toss immediately into the bowl so it doesn't change color, then move on to the next.

2.  Bring 2 C of water to a simmer in a small saucepan.  Drain artichokes and place in saucepan.  Simmer about 10 minutes, until slightly tender.  Drain.

3.  Combine artichokes, oil, and seasonings in the saucepan.  Cook over medium-low heat for another ten minutes, for the flavors to meld.  Stir occasionally.  You don't want to sauté them, just warm them through.  Remove from heat and allow to cool to room temperature.  Stir in juice of other half of lemon and chill until ready to use (up to 1 week).  The olive oil will look pasty in the fridge, but return to a liquid state when it's on the counter a few minutes.

Difficulty rating  :-0 (for trimming the artichokes)

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