Monday, July 18, 2011

Grilled artichokes for Meatless Monday

On the way back from Guido's extraordinary garden, I stopped at the market for a chicken. But what caught my eye was the artichokes for 50 cents a piece. I picked up 4 and had visions of a summer delight.

Grilled artichokes,  for me it conjures an image of cobblestone streets and ancient stone houses, grizzled old men and women whose lives you can read in their weathered faces. Simple food, fresh in from the fields, a crusty bread and wine from the grapes down the road. Oh, where was I? Right, the suburbs of Chicago. Sigh.....

But I can still have grilled artichokes.

4 artichokes trimmed
1/2 cup olive oil
2 cloves garlic minced
lemon juice

For the sauce (adapted from
1/2 cup mayonnaise
3 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
2 tablespoons olive oil
2 tablespoons oriental sesame oil
1 1/2 tablespoons honey
big splash lemon juice
3/4 teaspoon salt

Mix all together  in a bowl and refrigerate
For the artichokes,
Combine olive oil and minced garlic - set aside

Fill a  big pot with water, add a generous 1/2 cup lemon juice

Trim the artichokes, cutting off the top 1/4 and trimming the pointy leaves with kitchen shears.

Put  trimmed artichokes in lemon-watered pot. When finished with all the artichokes, drain all but the last 1" of water in the pot, remove the chokes, place a steamer insert, put the chokes back in, cover the pot with a lid, bring to a boil and steam for 10 minutes.

Cut into halves, then quarters. Use a spoon to remove the choke, it's the feathery bits above the top of the stem (the heart). Discard the choke. In the picture below the spoon is pointing at the bits to be removed.

Finish cleaning all the artichokes.

Prepare a grill to medium high heat. For the best flavor, I'd use lump wood charcoal, but as it was 95F out, I opted for just using the handy propane grill.

Put the artichokes on the grill and brush with the prepared garlic olive oil.

Grill until tender and artichoke have a bit of char on them. Plate and serve with Sesame dressing.
click on this picture

Under the  big sun umbrella, with my eyes closed, eating these with my fingers,  I am almost trasnsported.

Until next time, Eat Well & Keep Digging!

The Gastronomic Gardener
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  1. Looks yummy! I have never bought fresh artichokes before, just might have to try some now!

  2. Sorry but I have to disagree with you on Artichokes. I know that lots of gourmets love them ,but I have never seen the attraction in them. I think they are very laborious to prepare and the taste doesn't justify the effort! (Oh, and they give me flatulence!) :)

  3. This post takes me back to my youth, David. Mom would prepare the artichokes and Dad would grill them, no matter what the weather. They were great back then and yours look delicious now.

  4. Mrs Pickles - please do they are fun to make!

    Mark, to each their own. They were fun to make and delicious!

    ChgoJohn - what a wonderful memory, and what better way to honor that memory than to whip up a batch!


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