Have you ever walked into the produce section of your grocery store and stood staring at the artichokes thinking, “I really like canned artichokes, but what the heck do I do with that?” Do you find yourself walking away empty handed and frustrated about your lack of artichoke knowledge? If you answered “yes” to these questions, then you’re in luck! I am here to broaden your knowledge on these tricky little buggers. They are technically in the “thistle” family and have prickly thorn-like leaves. The only edible portion of the artichoke is the heart and lies in the middle, under a fuzzy bit called a choke, which honestly looks like the feathers of a baby chicken. Now, if you’re making some delicious spinach artichoke dip that requires a lot of artichoke hearts, there is no way you’re going to spend hours trimming and steaming 15 artichokes to get the amount you need. Frozen and canned artichokes hearts are amazing and 9 times out of 10 that is what you’ll be using. There are times, however, that you may be wanting to impress someone with your immense cooking and presentation skills. In that case, you can make these stuffed artichokes for an astounding first course. Keep reading to find out how to trim these guys and look for the recipe down below!
Cut off the artichoke stems so that they sit flat.
Cut off the top 1/2 inch of the artichoke with a serrated knife.
Cut about an inch off all remaining leaf tips with kitchen shears.
Separate leaves slightly with your thumbs, then pull out the purple leaves from the center and enough yellow ones to expose the fuzzy choke. Scoop out the choke with a melon-baller or small spoon, then squeeze some juice from other lemon half into center cavity. Repeat with remaining artichokes.
Spoon about 2 tablespoons of the stuffing into the cavity of each artichoke. Starting with the bottom leaves and spreading leaves open as much as possible without breaking, spoon a rounded teaspoon stuffing between each leaf.
When the artichokes are done, let cool for 10 minutes and squeeze what lemon you have left over the top.
- 2 large artichokes
- 1 cup panko breadcrumbs
- ⅔ cup of shredded parmesan
- 1 clove of finely minced garlic
- ¼ cup sundried tomatoes, packed in olive oil
- ½ cup kalamata olives
- 2 TBSP olive oil (I used the oil from the tomatoes)
- 2 TBSP chopped basil
- 1 small lemon, zested
- salt and pepper to taste
- Preheat oven to 375°F with the rack in the middle.
- Spread bread crumbs on a baking sheet and toast in oven, stirring once or twice, until pale golden, about 5-7minutes (Don’t stray too far from the oven though, because they go from perfectly toasted to burned in a flash!) Cool completely, then toss with parmesan, garlic, basil, olives, sundried tomatoes, parmesan, lemon zest, and salt & pepper in a bowl. Drizzle oil over crumbs and toss to coat. Taste the filling and adjust the salt and pepper accordingly. The tomatoes, olives, and parmesan add natural saltiness so start with about a tsp and work your way up.
- Cut off artichoke stems so that they sit flat. Cut off top ½ inch of the artichoke with a serrated knife, and cut about inch off all remaining leaf tips with kitchen shears. Rub cut leaves with a lemon half from the lemon you zested, this keeps the leaves from turning brown.
- Separate leaves slightly with your thumbs, then pull out purple leaves from center and enough yellow ones to expose fuzzy choke. Scoop out choke with a melon-baller or small spoon, then squeeze some juice from other lemon half into cavity. Repeat with remaining artichokes.
- Spoon about 2 tablespoons stuffing into cavity of each artichoke and, Starting with bottom leaves and spreading leaves open as much as possible without breaking, spoon a rounded teaspoon stuffing between each leaf.
- Fill a 8x8 baking pan with ½ and inch to and inch of water and place on a baking sheet for easier transport to the oven. Gently place the stuffed artichokes in the baking pan with the water and cover tightly with foil.
- Place artichokes in the oven, and roast for 50-60 minutes, or until the leaves pull away from the artichoke easily.
- When Artichokes are done, let cool for 10 minutes and squeeze what lemon you have left over the top.
- To eat, bite the leaf and scrape the bit of artichoke heart off of the leaf with the filling and Enjoy! After you have gone through all of the leaves, you can cut though what is left and eat with what filling you have over.