Stuffed Artichokes

Stuffed artichokes, Italian style, are an old New Orleans favorite. They’re at their best in springtime, when the new crop of artichokes appears. The stuffing is mostly bread crumbs and garlic. Not everybody likes (or understands) stuffed artichokes. My wife does; I don’t. This recipe came from the old Toney’s on Bourbon Street, which sold them by the hundreds.

Stuffed artichokes, with plenty of olive oil, bread crumbs and garlic.

  • 4 fresh medium artichokes
  • 2 cups bread crumbs
  • 3 Tbs. chopped fresh garlic
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 4 anchovy fillets, chopped
  • 3 Tbs. chopped fresh parsley
  • 1/4 cup grated Romano cheese
  • 1 tsp. oregano
  • 1/8 tsp. sugar
  • Salt and black pepper to taste
  • One large lemon

1. Thoroughly wash artichokes. Carefully trim off top inch off each. Trim the stem so that the artichokes will sit straight up. With scissors, trim off points of leaves. Soak artichokes 30 minutes in 1/2 gallon of water with 2 tsp. salt dissolved.

2. Meanwhile, sauté garlic in a large skillet in the olive oil. Add all the remaining ingredients except the lemon and continue cooking, stirring frequently, over low heat until everything is well blended.
3. To stuff artichokes, spread the outer leaves and spoon in the stuffing, starting from the top and going around to the bottom. Form foil cups around the bottom half of each artichoke.

4. Place stuffed artichokes into a large kettle or Dutch oven with an inch of water in the bottom. Squeeze lemon juice liberally over all. Cook, covered, over medium heat for 30 to 40 minutes. Do not boil dry. Artichokes are done when inner leaves can be pulled out easily. If you can lift the artichoke by its inner leaves, it’s not done.

5. Allow to cool until you can touch them, and dig in. Also good cold as a late-night snack–in moderation, and only if your mate eats them with you.

Serves four.

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