Monday, April 2, 2012

Lundi: Recipes

The three As, asparagus, artichokes and avocado, always make me think of spring.  Even though we don’t see the first two (that are edible, anyway) until well into summer (when the locally grown produce hits the farmer’s markets), I still remember my “salad” days in SoCal, making them for Easter brunch or dinner.  So, in memory of those times, here is a delicious Creole stuffed artichoke recipe from my favorite New Orleans chef, Leon E. Soniat Jr.

4 medium sized artichokes
½ stick (1/4 c) butter
4 shallots, finely chopped
¼ cup finely chopped onions
1 cup cooked and deveined shrimp
1 ½ cups seasoned bread crumbs
4 tbsps lemon juice
1 egg, beaten
Olive oil

With a knife or kitchen shears, but off the top third of the artichokes.  Pull off some of the larger outer leaves at the bottom.  Open the center and clean out the choke (those fuzzy, purplish leaves) all the way to the heart.  You can gently scrape the heart in the center with a spoon to make room for the stuffing.  Cut off the stem to form a flat bottom and stand the four artichokes up in a saucepan.  They should fit together snuggly so that they can’t really move around.  Add a tablespoon of salt, two tablespoons of lemon juice and boiling water to cover.  Cover with a tight lid and allow to simmer for half an hour.  Remove the artichokes from the water and turn upside down on a towel to drain.

Put the butter and two tablespoons of good olive oil in a skillet.  Sauté the shallots and onions in this mixture for five minutes.  Remove from heat and add the bread crumbs.  Chop the shrimp into small pieces and add to the skillet along with one teaspoon of salt and two tablespoons of lemon juice, the beaten egg and Tabasco to taste.  Mix thoroughly and then spoon the mixture into the drained artichokes.

Put the artichokes into a small pan and then pour boiling water in the pan to about 1 inch.  Brush the artichokes with a good bit of olive oil, cover with foil and bake 30 minutes in an oven preheated to 350 degrees. 

As a main dish, this recipe will serve four; as a side dish, it will serve six.  Bon appetite ~

Header: Preparations by Todd Williams via American Gallery


Timmy! said...

Sounds tasty to me, Pauline!

Pauline said...

Indeed; but artichokes take a lot of patience to prepare. More than I have these days, sorry to say.