As much as it can make us a little lazy to peel fresh artichokes, cooking them at home always has tasty rewards. Candied, roasted, microwaved, in rice dishes or stews, the artichokes they are always delicious, and with this recipe in padella or to the pan, we add another way to prepare them to our repertoire, very easy and light.
The original Italian recipe suggests flavoring the dish with a mint branch, a more common ingredient in certain areas of the country than in our kitchen, but in our case we have replaced it with whole cayenne pepper and green onion stems. The idea is aromatize a little oil, and it would also be very good with thyme, rosemary, sage, or nothing.
Once peeled, the process is easy, since we do not have to cook them beforehand. The vegetables are first browned in the frying pan, flavored with white wine and finished cooking with a small amount of liquid which can be broth or just water. Light, juicy and very tasty.
Prepare a container with a little water and squeezed lemon juice, leaving the shells of it inside as well; if it is small use two. Peel and clean the artichokes as indicated here, leaving part of the stem and cutting them in half to leave them submerged in the lemon.
Peel the garlic and slightly crush with the flat blade of the knife. Heat a splash of oil in a large frying pan over low heat with the garlic, the cayenne pepper and the green stem of spring onion or a branch of aromatic herb (thyme, rosemary, chives, mint…), making sure it does not smoke.
Meanwhile remove the artichokes, draining them gently, and cut each half in two. Add to the pan, season with salt and pepper and cook covered for five minutes over medium-high heat. cover with wine, let the alcohol evaporate and add the broth or water; better not to pour it all to correct the level of liquid later.
Lower the heat and leave cook about 10-15 minutes, uncovered, making sure they don’t get too dry and checking the doneness to taste. Serve with plenty of chopped parsley and optional lemon zest.
With what to accompany the artichokes to the pan
artichokes are a perfect side dish of meat or fish, especially if we bake them to divide the work and not have to handle several pans at the same time, from chicken pieces to rabbit or even octopus or salmon. To turn them into a complete single dish, for example for dinner, we can crown them with some good fried eggs -with very honeyed yolk- or make them vegan with grilled tofu.
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