Maria's Artichokes ~ Carciofi alla Maria

Spring brings bright fresh flavors! This artichoke dish, courtesy of our friend Maria, is a fantastic example of spring on your plate! We serve it as an antipasta, but you could easily serve it as a side-dish. Sometimes Jason leaves out the olives (as he doesn't really like 'em) & it still comes out great.

To be honest, the first time Jason said he was making artichokes with capers & olives, I thought it sounded kinda gross because I'm not a huge fan of capers - BUT! I can't deny it - these are soooo good!! Now I'm beggin' for more! If you love spring artichokes, try this pasta recipe ~ Pasta with spring vegetables (fava, artichokes, peas) Spaghetti alla chitarra con vedure primavera.

Maria's Artichokes
Carciofi alla Maria

Serves 4

juice of 1/2 lemon, strained
8 globe artichokes, remove tough outer leaves, scoop out choke & cut into wedges
3-4 tablespoons olive oil
2 garlic cloves
1 tablespoon capers, drained & rinsed
scant 1 cup green olives, pitted & chopped
1 tablespoon fresh flat-leaf parsley, chopped
salt & pepper

Half-fill a bowl with water, stir in the lemon juice, add the artichokes & let soak for 10 minutes, then drain & pat dry.

Heat the olive oil in a pan, add the garlic & cook for a few minutes until golden brown, then remove & discard.

Add the artichoke wedges to the pan & cook over high heat for 5 minutes, then add the capers & olives.

Season with salt & pepper to taste and add 2/3 cup warm water.

Mix well, cover & simmer for about 30 minutes until tender.

Remove the lid & boil off any excess liquid.

Transfer the artichokes to a serving dish, sprinkle with parsley.

Served both warm & at room temperature.

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