There are lots of things my family loves…pasta, wine, cheese…and a big favorite in the vegetable group…
Sorry, but I have to shout it out. Artichokes are wonderful. I’ve been eating them for as long as I can remember…and this recipe is the reason why.
My great-grandmother (Dad’s maternal grandmother), otherwise known as Big Grandma, brought this recipe over with her from Italy when she came to the US. I was fortunate enough to know Big Grandma for a long time – she died while I was in college – and for the most part, she wasn’t able to do much cooking since she suffered from Parkinson’s starting at an early age.
Fortunately, this recipe has passed on through the next 3 generations…soon to be 4. It’s easy, and delicious, and one to try to convert the artichoke naysayers (how dare they???). What are your thoughts on artichokes?
Put a little bit of Sicily on your table tonight 🙂
Big Grandma’s Stuffed Artichokes
4 large artichokes
2 cups bread crumbs
1 cup grated parmesan or pecorino romano cheese
1 cup raisins (red or white)
1/2 cup pignoli nuts
extra virgin olive oil
Salt and pepper to taste
Using a bread knife, cut the top of the choke to level it. Cut stem off. Peel stem and reserve to put in pot when cooking artichoke.
With kitchen scissors, cut the sharp edges off the leaves. Mix parmesan cheese, raisins, pignoli nuts and bread crumbs with some pepper. Spread the leaves on the chokes and stuff with mix. One way to do this: stand the choke in a separate soup bowl and hollow out the center where the thorny leaves are…put a very generous amount of the mixture on the center cavity, spread the leaves and push the mixture into the leaf area.
Using a pot tall enough to cover the chokes and cover, place the chokes in, fill with water and some olive oil to cover the bottom of the leaves (about a third of the way up the artichoke). Drizzle some additional oil on top of each choke.
Bring water to a boil, then reduce to a simmer. Cover the pot and steam the chokes for approximately one hour. Pull a leaf and taste for tenderness. If you like it more tender, steam longer.