|Globe artichokes, stuffed with breadcrumbs and Parmesan|
Globe artichokes are funny lookin' things! At first like a cactus (but actually a thistle) and later like a delicate flower, an artichoke is worth the patience for its nutty and creamy decadence.
Although they look a little daunting to prepare, turning an artichoke can actually be very simple, although I was surprised how much of the vegetable is not actually eaten, only the soft heart is consumed once the leaves, scratchy 'petals' and choke are removed. The revealed heart can be boiled baked, grilled, barbecued or steamed and then stuffed with whatever you fancy really - cheese bread, ham, anchovies, tomato, bacon, egg - like a homemade mini pizza! They make a great side dish or a large artichoke would be a great vegetarian dish.
Although I usually find Michel Roux Jr. far too dramatic, I recently watched one of his mater classes and saw how easily he turned his artichoke.
Worth a watch... but If his ease irritates you however, you can follow these simple directions;
Wash your artichoke and remove the stem with a knife to create a flat base.
Pull off or cut away the green leaves with a small knife. This reveals the heart which should be steamed or boiled until softened.
Once softened, remove the purple leaves and reveal the fuzzy choke center. This should be dug out with a spoon to make a hollow for your stuffing. It is also completely inedible and bristly.
Baked Artichokes with Parmesan Stuffing
For 2 People
2 prepared artichoke hearts
1 slice of your favourite bread made into crumbs
Parmesan finely grated
a drizzle of oil
Finely chopped fresh/ dried rosemary
1. Heat the oven to 190C.
2. Mix the stuffing ingredients to your taste and pack into the heart.
3. Bake for 25 mins until browned.