The Art I Choke

Yesterday was a sad day. Our uncle Joe passed after fighting leukemia for ten months. I feel so lucky to have known him and I am sad for his wife, children, grandchildren and sisters. What brings tears to my eyes is my husband’s grandmother- Memere, a sweet, sharp, amazing woman in her 80’s.  She had to go to sleep last night having lost her first baby and only son. This tears me up. I wish there was anything that could make the hurt I know she is feeling disappear.
I was also sad because my sister in law returned to Toronto with my beautiful ten month old niece C.P. and I miss my baby girl so much. I know the next time we see her she will be walking and talking. R who is the best sister in law anyone could ask for was really supportive when I asked her to guest blog. She made these stuffed artichokes and helped set up and take some of the photos. I think they turned out great.
I love making artichoke steamed then dipped in balsamic vinaigrette but after trying my Italian neighbor’s stuffed artichoke wanted to try a similar recipe. R found this recipe on the California Artichoke website (yes there is such a thing). Artichokes are messy so they are best served as an appetizer with friends that you don’t mind getting untidy around.
To make, you will need:
4 large artichokes
2 cups herbed bread crumbs

½ cup grated Parmesan cheese
¼ cup extra virgin olive oil
2 cloves garlic, minced
2 tablespoons chopped Italian parsley
1 tablespoon dried oregano
Salt and pepper

1. Wash artichokes and cut off stems at base and remove small bottom leaves.
2. Cut off top quarter of artichokes; discard. Spread leaves, remove center leaves and fuzzy centers with a spoon and discard.

3. Toss bread crumbs with cheese, olive oil, garlic, parsley, oregano, salt and pepper to taste.
4. Stuff bread crumb mixture between leaves of artichokes and fill centers.
5. Place stuffed artichokes in baking dish.

6. Pour 2 cups boiling water around the artichokes.
7. Cover with foil.
8. Bake at 350 degrees F. for an hour or until artichokes are tender.
9. Remove artichokes from baking dish and let cool.
10. Enjoy

(Notes- We all agreed that there were way too many bread crumbs. R. suggested Panko for next time. We ended up dipping the heart into balsamic and it was awesome! I forgot to put the lemon on the artichoke but the lemon would add not only flavor but help the artichoke stay green).

Here is a picture of my niece on our trampoline. With the sun and the static what a shot by R!


Mary said...

I am so sorry for your loss. I wish there were words that could make the hurt go away. Your niece is darling and I appreciate the recipe for artichokes at such a difficult time. Blessings...Mary

Bo said...

I'm so sorry to hear about the loss of your uncle...Your niece is so adorable.

fanja said...

i am very sorry for your loss.
thank you for posting this artichoke recipe, it looks delicious.
and thank you for your nice words on my blog x

Anonymous said...

So sorry to hear of your family's loss. Thinking of you.
Enjoyed the pictures of your recipe. I usually just steam my artichokes, however stuffing them opens the way to many possibilities.
Your niece is adorable. Her expression and hairstyle-well it is so artistic. Great picture.

Lady Ren said...

Thank you so much for your kind words. Uncle Joe will be laid to rest tomorrow (Friday).

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