Yes, this is my second artichoke recipe of the season. No, this will not be the last.
As you are probably well aware, I'm kind of obsessed with artichokes. They are one of my favorite foods of all time. I'm not sure exactly why I love them so much. My mom used to make big batches of steamed artichokes when I was growing up, and when they were in season, it seemed like we always had stuffed artichokes around. I'd come home from school and immediately run to the fridge with hopes that I would find something yummy to snack on, and if that yummy thing happened to be an artichoke, well then it was a happy day.
My mom always used the same recipe, and when I started making them for myself I used my mom's recipe. It was not until the past couple of years that I started to branch out prepare them in different ways.
When we were in Rome for our honeymoon last year, it was artichoke season. Lucky me. Lucky us. There was not a single restaurant in Rome that did not have an artichoke on the menu. Some as an appetizers, some as a side, and a few as a main course. They were prepared in every which way, steamed, fried, grilled, served in salads, dissected, or whole. And we tried them all. It definitely inspired me to branch out and try different preparations.
This marinating and grilling preparation has been my absolute favorite this year. So much so that I have not stuffed or steamed a single artichoke this season ..... (yet). It is a little easier because you don't have as much prep and cook time. You just steam them lightly, toss them in a bag with some olive oil, salt, pepper, garlic and lemon and when you're ready to eat them just throw them on a grill or grill pan for a few minutes. As with most things, the longer you marinate the better.
I have made these about 4-5 time in the past few weeks. I have wondered if Michael is getting sick of artichokes, I don't think it possible for me to.
grilled artichokes marinated in garlic + lemon
2 artichokes, serves 2-4 people
2 large globe artichokes
4 garlic cloves, pressed
salt + pepper
red pepper flakes (optional)
optional for serving: a couple of scoops of cooked quinoa, couscous, or millet for the insides of the artichokes
Trim, prepare, and steam the artichokes
- Slice off the top 1/2 of the artichoke, but keep the stem in tact. Then, using a scissor, snip off the tops of the leaves where the prickly bits are.
- Then place a large pot of boiling water with a steamer basket over high heat (make sure the water comes up to the basket but does not go over). Place the artichokes in the steamer basket, cover, and steam for 30 minutes. Remove them from the pot and allow them to cool slightly.
Marinate the artichokes
- When the artichokes are steaming, prepare the marinade. Place about 1/4 cup of olive oil, the garlic, the juice of 1 lemon and some salt and pepper and red pepper flakes in a large bowl or plastic bag.
- When the artichokes have cooled, slice them down the center being careful to keep the artichokes in tact. Then, using a spoon, scoop out the prickly insides that surround the heart.
- Place the artichokes into the bowl or bag with the marinade and make sure the marinade is covering the artichokes. Place them in the fridge until you are ready to serve. It is best to marinate them overnight or for a day, but if you don't have the time you can marinade them for 20-30 minutes.
Grill the artichokes
- Using either a grill or a grill pan, set the heat to medium-high. Place the artichokes cut side down and grill them for about 5 minutes on each side.
- I also like to grill a lemon along with the artichokes, so I slice the second lemon in half and place it on the grill for about 5 minutes.
- Serve warm with a squeeze of the grilled lemon, and with a scoop of quinoa, millet or couscous if you like.