There are as many recipes for stuffed artichokes as there are Italian
families in New Orleans. This is one of those easy and traditional
favorites. Feel free to remove the center leaves and stuff the cavity.
Or, you may wish to leave them in, steam the artichoke and pull
out the center leaves and eat with olive oil and vinegar.
- 6 large artichokes
- 6 lemon slices
- ½ pound smoked bacon, sliced
- 10 cups Italian style breadcrumbs
- 1 ½ cups Parmigiano Reggiano cheese, grated
- 1 ½ cups Pecorino Romano cheese, grated
- 1 cup green onion, thinly sliced
- ½ cup parsley, minced
- ½ cup garlic minced
- 2 tbsps. salt
- 1 tbsp. freshly ground black pepper
- 1 tbsp. cayenne pepper
- 2 tbsps. chopped basil
- 3 cups extra virgin olive oil
Using scissors snip off the prickly end of each artichoke leaf.
Using a paring knife slice off the stem end of each artichoke so
that they sit up straight. Rub a lemon on the cut ends to prevent
browning. Fry the bacon until crisp and drain. Crumble bacon into
a large bowl, and add in the breadcrumbs, cheese, green onions,
parsley, garlic, seasonings, and 1 ½ cups of olive oil. Using
your hands blend the ingredients thoroughly. Beginning at the top
of the artichoke spread the leaves as much as possible and pack
in a generous amount of stuffing. Contunine around the artichoke
until all leaves are completely filled down to the bottom. ( Note:
It is always best to stuff the artichokes inside the bowl of stuffing
so that the excess breading falls back into the bowl. Tap each artichoke
gently to let any loose stuffing fall off. Stand artichokes in a
roasting pan or canning pot just large enough to hold them in a
single layer. Add water to a depth of 1 inch. Pour 1/4 cup of olive
oil in a slow stream over each artichoke, allowing it to seep in.
Top each artichoke with a slice of lemon. Bring the water to a rolling
boil, reduce to simmer, cover and steam the artichokes until the
leaves pull off easily, at least one hour. Check the water level
often and add more if necessary. Serve hot or warm. The stuffed
artichokes can be prepared in advance and reheated before serving.
If you would like, sprinkle grated Parmigiano Reggiano cheese over
the top and place briefly under a broiler until cheese melts and
begins to brown.