Insalata di carciofi (artichoke salad)

Yield: 6 servings

Measure Ingredient
12 \N To 16 medium-sized artichokes
3 tablespoons Olive oil
1 \N Garlic clove, crushed
1 \N Bay leaf
½ \N Lemon, sliced razor thin
\N \N Juice of 1/2 lemon
6 tablespoons High-quality extra virgin olive oil
1½ tablespoon To 2 tb Fresh Italian parsley, finely minced
1 small Onion, minced
\N \N About 20 small black olives pitted and chopped
\N \N Salt
\N \N Fresh black pepper

1. Trim the artichokes of tough leaves, spines and ragged stem ends.

Heat the regular olive oil in a heavy skillet that can be covered.

Saute the garlic and remove. Place the artichokes in bottom-side down and cook over low heat for ten minutes. Add the bay leaf and a half cup of water, bring to boil, reduce heat to simmering, cover and cook for 15 to 20 minutes or until artichokes are just tender on the inside.

2. When the artichokes are cool enough to handle comfortably, peel off the leaves and reserve. Remove the hairy choke and discard. If the bottoms are large, slice them in halves, or quarters. If small, leave them whole. Toss with the lemon juice.

3. Scrape the succulent meat from the bottom part of the larger leaves and place in a bowl with the olive oil, 2/3rds of the parsley, salt and pepper to taste. Mix well, until bound. You may use an electric mixer on this.

4. Pour over the artichoke bottoms and lemon juice, gently mixing with a big wooden spoon. Arrange on a platter with lemon slices, sprinkle with minced onion, olives and more parsley. Toss before serving. Serve at room temperature with good crusty bread.

Source: Journal of Italian Food & Wine

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