Eat Your Artichoke Heart Out!

My next recipe is a side dish from a cookbook called Classic Pasta at Home. There are only three categories in this book, pasta, appetizers, and desserts . So like I said, I made a side dish called Artichokes, Roman Style.

This sounds simple enough, right? Well let me tell you, the Romans have a reputation for tenacity and perseverance and that shows in their desire to even bother having their own recipe for artichokes. Why, you ask? I’ll tell you, because there are a million prickly layers that are hard to rip off, you prick your fingers, and then you realize the heart of the artichoke is very small. At this point you think to yourself, “Why did I bother?”

This reminds me of an ex actually. I dated him for two and a half years and his cat gave me more love than him. Sorry, I couldn’t resist. I doubt he’d read this anyway and admittedly he’s the only ex whose feelings I’m not too concerned with. I know that sounds awful, but if you knew what he put me through you’d probably understand.

If any other exes read this, you are ok in my book, even if we aren’t exactly close anymore. I also hope I made it clear enough to whom I’m referring to as well so there are no misunderstandings.

I probably should just delete that comment. It’s becoming a lot like the artichoke, a lot of effort to make sure I don’t insult people I actually like for one tiny joke. Truthfully, most of the men in my life have had some layers, but they were more like onions. Which is fine. I like onions. It’s ok to be guarded. I understand that.

What is this blog about again? Oh yeah, cooking.

Anyway, artichokes take a lot of effort and this recipe almost killed me. First off, artichokes are surprisingly expensive. I believe I paid $10-15 for four artichokes! Secondly, it takes forever to peel off the layers and towards the bottom things start to get prickly. I even soaked these in lemon water, but they were still hard and brittle!

After peeling off all those layers, you spoon in a mixture of garlic, mint, parsley, and olive oil. Then you simmer each artichoke in olive oil, white wine, and water.

The result I got was disappointing. I’m guessing that’s because I didn’t soak them well enough. Most of the artichoke came out hard, but the parts that weren’t did taste very good.

I have a friend that is a pretty good cook who agreed with my analysis that cooking with artichokes is just not worth the trouble. Not unless you really know what you’re doing anyway. We both recommend just buying canned artichoke hearts. The heart is the best part anyway and it’s already prepared for you when it comes in a can. This is not recommended when it comes to men though. Don’t buy jarred man hearts, some of them are worth the layers.

photo (12)

Finished product of some very insensitive, hard, and brittle artichokes.

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