Priscilla’s artichoke alla Italiana

This recipe is mine inspired on my Italian grandmother Lygia S.Kerr. I grew up eating artichoke but just as an appetiser only cooked in chicken broth with melted mozzarella, than they would serve the main meal. In Canada I was surprised that most of my Canadian friends never had artichoke other than in cans , whole hearts. Mostly a dip recipe.  Some supermarkets would not even offer it in their  produce display tables. My stomach has been a bit upset with a stomach flu and in TCM Artichoke (Yang Ji) Botanical Name: Cynara cardunculus is great to heal the liver energy. It is also famous for its antioxidant and high dietary fiber content.  The leaves are made into extracts used to stimulate the flow of bile from the liver which helps relieve heartburn and alcohol “hangovers.” Artichokes are an excellent liver tonifying food and medicine.  I was craving it, so I prepared for lunch today and some Jewish friends mostly Italian descents or just the ones that have been in Italy and enjoyed over there asked me the recipe . The Funny catch was that If you were watching at Netflix the series like me  :” the Crown” you will understand that  Artichoke could work as a  ” testing ” food to see if you are royalty or not. If you never ate before and someone puts that in front of you 🤣 you might want to cry of embarrassment, specially if they wait you to start eating ! Yes 😂 they will know you re not royal material 😜!  But let’s  go to business. Don’t serve that on your first date. Just saying 😂. If you want that  to be a vegetarian recipe or Kosher  just avoid the turkey meat or just don’t mix the dairy with the meat, you have to choose one, so choose the mozzarella. 

Ingredients: 

6 artichokes

1/3 cup table salt

7 litres of water

sauce:

5 Tomatoes chopped

One white onion chopped

4 cloves of garlic chopped

Italian herbs 

200 gr smoked turkey Deli chopped in small squares ( bought at Calabria Market) 

 400 gr sliced mozzarella ( bought at Calabria Market) 

  1  1/2 table spoon kosher salt 

  1 carrot peeled and cut in small cubes 

  1/2 table spoon of dark sugar

  Fresh ground pepper 1 tea spoon

  1 table spoon of capers chopped small ( bought at Calabria Market) 

  1/3 cup fresh basil chopped

  3 cans of fire roasted diced tomatoes ( 398 ml each ) or just regular can of tomato sauce. ( bought at Calabria Market) 

 3 table spoon of extra virgin olive oil

 

How to make it : 

Turn your oven to 350 F. 

Get the artichokes washed them well with running water. Then cut the stalks to the base of each one , get a big pan and add water to cover all the artichokes . Put to boil . Add 1\3 cup table salt . Put in low heat once is boiling and cover it for  30 min.    

While you are waiting the artichokes to be ready, get another pan, medium  size and use the oil to fry onions and garlic, capers , carrots and smoked turkey deli. After 5 minutes add the cans of tomatoes sauce than all the others ingredients with the exception of the mozzarella. Cook the tomato sauce in low heat for 20 minutes. Turn it off and reserve.

 How to assemble your dish to go to the oven:

Get a 16.5″X12.5″  Roaster Cooking Tray Pan or a casserole that will fit 6 artichokes . Get the sauce and a soup spoon and with the help of a fork open the leaves to make sure the sauce penetrate each part of each artichoke. Than between the leaves get the mozzarella and fit there, as many as you want, I use the whole 400 gr of cheese for the 6 of them.  Than pour the rest of the sauce on top. Transfer to the medium rack  Oven  for 20 more minutes to melt the cheese and it is good to serve. You normally remove each leave with the sauce and cheese and only eat the soft part -white area of the leave , use you teeth to remove all the soft part and dispose the leave in a extra plate beside you. Do not swallow the whole leave !  maybe  if you never ate the leaves before just watch on youtube …on this video she cooked one than she shows how to eat it…https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CPwEX4Q1QAs.  TO GET TO the heart of the flower is very spiky so you should use a sharp knife and than dip the heart in a mix of balsamic reduction with a pinch of salt, pepper and  a table spoon of good quality olive oil. It s how I like to eat mine ! 

I hope you enjoy it! In questa prospettiva vi auguro adesso buon appetito!

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