Today I’m bringing you a classic that I grew up with. Italian stuffed artichokes are easier to prepare than you make think, and make for a great appetizer or light main course. Plus, who doesn’t love bread and garlic and cheese.
Artichokes are back.
I don’t know about you, but I’m pretty excited that artichokes are back in season. I realized I’ve been craving my mom’s stuffed artichokes, and thought it was the perfect opportunity to bring this recipe to the blog.
Aside from one or two small tweaks, this is exactly like the recipe I grew up with. The main attraction is a breadcrumb filling flavored with good quality parmesan cheese, crushed garlic, chopped parsley and olive oil. My special addition is a little lemon zest to brighten up the deep, earthy flavors of the artichoke. I also like to toast my breadcrumbs (especially if they’re fresh), to intensify the flavor.
Do It Like Your Mama
As far as my process goes, I cook it just like my mama, and my mama’s mama. I clean and trim the artichokes just like they did. If my description in the recipe box doesn’t suffice, there are plenty of youtube videos out there to get you through that step.
I also stuff the artichokes in just the same manner. I was interested to see variations in artichoke prep among different cooks, and may try the method where you remove the inedible choke center before cooking, but I like my way just fine.
We steam them in a covered pot with a little water for a good hour until they’re tender, and then transfer the pot uncovered to the oven to get some good color and crispiness on these chokes. Preparing these Italian Stuffed Artichokes may seem a little more burdensome then it actually is, and trust me, it’s completely worth every minute of your time.
How to eat an artichoke
If this kind of recipe is foreign to you, then I’ll quickly explain how you enjoy a steamed artichoke. Pluck off an outer leaf, hold it inside of your mouth breadcrumb side down, bite down gently with the nonmeaty end out and scrape your teeth across to gather all those breadcrumb bits and artichoke meat at the end. If that didn’t make sense, again youtube it.
Once you get to the center you’ll find some inedible leafy furry bits. Get rid of those and expose the beautiful heart inside. That’s kinda the best part. Also if you’re artichokes are fresh, the stems will get super tasty and tender as well.
Heart is exposed below, for those of you who are not artichoke eaters. It’s SO good. Now get some Italian Stuffed Artichokes in your life.
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Italian stuffed artichokes are easier to prepare than you make think, and make for a great appetizer or light main course. Plus, who doesn’t love bread and garlic and cheese.
- 3 globe (or 4 medium) artichokes
- 1 cup fine, plain breadcrumbs
- 1/3 cup parmigianno reggiano (parmesan) cheese, finely grated
- 2 cloves garlic, crushed in press
- 1 cup loosely packed parsley, finely chopped (~1/4 cup chopped)
- 5 tbsp extra virgin olive oil, divided
- 1 lemon, zested
- Kosher salt
- Lemon wedges, for serving
1. Toast breadcrumbs. Add breadcrumbs to an unheated, nonstick pan. Turn heat to medium. Toast, stirring frequently when bread begins to color, for about 6-8 minutes or until lightly browned. Transfer to bowl to cool.
2. Clean artichokes. Cut off stems of artichokes. Trim bottoms of stems and peel off rough outer layer. Rub with a cut lemon. Peel off first and second bottom rows of artichoke leaves. Rub exposed area with a cut lemon. Trim top ½ inch of remaining leaves with a scissor. When you get close to center, use knife to cut off remaining tips straight across all at once.
3. Mix stuffing. Add cheese, garlic, parsley and lemon zest to bowl with cooled breadcrumbs, and stir to combine. Stir in 4 tablespoons of oil. Season with salt to taste.
4. Stuff artichokes. Using a small spoon, stuff each outer leaf of artichoke with filling. There is no need to stuff thin, inner leaves.
5. Steam artichokes. Add stuffed artichokes to a pot with high sides that they will fit into very snug. Season stems with salt and add to bottom of pot. Fill with 1 ½ inches of water. Season water with a few pinches of salt. Drizzle the top of the artichokes with remaining tablespoon of oil. Cover with lid and bring to a gentle boil. Reduce to a simmer and steam 50-60 minutes or until artichokes are tender and leaves pull off easily. Add additional water, as needed, to maintain 1 inch of water on the bottom of the pot.
6. Preheat oven and roast artichokes. After artichokes are cooking about 30 minutes, preheat oven to 450°F. When artichokes are cooked through, remove lid and place on center rack of oven. Roast for 8-12 minutes or until browned on top.
7. Serve. Transfer artichokes and stems to serving plates. Serve with lemon wedges if desired. Enjoy.
- Category: Appetizer
- Method: Steam, Roast
- Cuisine: Italian
- Serving Size: 1 artichoke
- Calories: 460
- Sugar: 4g
- Sodium: 560mg
- Fat: 28g
- Saturated Fat: 5g
- Carbohydrates: 44g
- Fiber: 11g
- Protein: 14g
Keywords: Italian, artichokes, stuffed, breadcrumbs, cheese