Artichokes by my Grandma <3

artichokes

My grandma used to have a huge pot, perfect to cook a lot of artichokes, I don’t own one, so I can unfortunately only make 4 at time! In Sicily we usually have artichokes around Easter time, we grill them in our bbq parties or we stuff them. Still, another option is to simply boil them, and make some “intingolo”: a mix of olive oil, garlic, oregano, balsamic vinegar, and take each single leaf, sink them in your mixture, and eat it.

Time: 30 minuts cooking + 30 min preparation

Ingredients:

  • 4 artichokes
  • olive oil
  • anchovies paste (if you want to make it vegan, skip it)
  • fine bread crumbs (~150 gr.)
  • fresh parsley
  • 1 clove garlic
  • pepper, salt
  • 3 lemons

1. First we need to clean our artichokes:

a) Remove the external leaves, I usually take two layers off. Doing so you are going to eat only the soft leaves, which are easier to digest.

b) Cut the bottom part off, in order to let our artichoke able to sit on his butt and stay vertically in our pot later.

c) Rub half a lemon all around, so the leaves won’t start oxidation process and won’t change their color.

d) There are different kind of artichokes, but most of them have pointy spike ends: use some scissors to remove the external ones. If you’re lucky you can find the variety without them, but this passage doesn’t really take long!

e) with your thumbs try to open the leaves gently.

f) put them inside a bowl with water,parsley and 3-4 half lemons.

2. For the stuffing part we need to warm  a generous amount of olive oil in a pan. Add two tablespoons anchovies paste and press a clove of garlic; with the help of a wood tablespoon, mix them together.

3. Add the fine bread crumbs and pepper. Let them get some color – around 5 minutes. Turn off, add a generous amount of chopped fresh parsley and half glass of water. The crumb mixture should have a moister texture.

4. Go back to your artichokes, gently squeeze them and place them on a plate with head facing down, so the remaining water will fall down. One by one, with a teaspoon, put your stuffing bread between the leaves. Don’t panic, it has to be messy and not perfect!

5. Get a large pot, place the artichokes on their bottom. The pot needs to be the right size to help them stay steady vertically, but not too squeezed.  Add carefully one glass water + 3 teaspoons olive oil to the bottom of your pot, pay attention do not to get your artichoke-heads wet.

6. Cook for 30 minutes, always with the lid on, at slow-medium heat.

Buon appetito to everyone!!!

Advertisements

Grandma Pasta Recipe

pasta_sundriedtomatoesI really love this recipe! When I was studying for my bachelor, I used to visit my grandma every Wednesday lunch and this was one of her typical “I completely forgot you were supposed to visit me!”-recipe. I miss you so much grandma!

Time: 10 min

Ingredients:   [ for 2 ppl]

  • 150 gr sun-dried tomatoes
  • olive oil (a nice amount)
  • 4 cloves garlic
  • parsley ( again..a nice amount)
  • 1 teaspoon chili pepper

1. Bring to boil a pot of water with salt in it and cook any kind of medium-size pasta you would like.

2. While your pasta is cooking ( al dente!), heat a pan with a generous amount of olive oil. Toss in it 4 cloves of garlic after you’ve pressed them with your hand to get all the flavor out. Add also 1 teaspoon of chili pepper ( or even less if your don’t like spicy food).

3, When the garlic is sizzling, add sun-dried tomatoes,thinly cut; let them cook for 5-6 min. I usually add a small cup of the boiling water in the pan to make everything smooth later and avoid to burn your garlic.

4. Drain the pasta and put it together in the saucepan where your sun-dried tomatoes are cooking and season everything with a lot of parsley.

And that’s it! Buon appetito

Chicken with peppers and potatoes

grandma_chickenTime: 1 hour

Ingredients: 4 ppl

  • 1 kg potatoes
  • 4 little peppers ( or 2 big) red are more colorful and funny)
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 4 chicken haunch or legs ( with skin)
  • pepper, salt, rosemary, olive oil ( and chili pepper if you want it more spicy)

1. In a little bowl, put two spoons olive oil, salt, garlic, pepper and rosemary to sink together( my grandma also used to put fresh chili pepper in it). Peel the potatoes, clean and cut in big chucks peppers- otherwise your peppers are going to be burnt before your potatoes are fully cooked.

2. Toss the veggies in a casserole and season with salt, I usually use my hands to mix everything evenly. Use a kitchen-brush to spread the oil on your chicken legs and on your veggies. Cook for 45 min at 200°c.

Buon appetito!!

chicken_pepper

Risotto with Lemon – Recipe

risotto_limone

Time:30 min

Ingredients:  [quantity for 4 ppl]

  • 400 gr rice (carnaroli or arborio)
  • 1 onion
  • 1 big lemon
  • 1 glass white kitchen wine
  • a spoon Parmesan cheese
  • butter
  • pepper + parsley

1. Put a little bit of butter in a pot, when it starts frying add a fine chopped onion. At the same time, fill another pot with water and brings it to boil. You can decide to use plain water (lighter and healthier choice) or to put half bouillon/stock cube as my sweet sweet Grandma used to. By the way, this is one of her simple and super-tasty recipe.

2. After the onion sweats, put the rice, toast it and add a glass of white wine.

3. Once the wine is all dried off, start adding a scoop of boiling water(with or without bouillon) and wait till it evaporate. Keep putting water spoon by spoon till the rice is cooked up.

4.  When you see the rice is almost done, season it with pepper, Parmesan cheese and the juice of one lemon.Adjust with salt and cook for other 5 minutes. Now it should be all creamy and the lemon juice sunk and dried in.

Serve it hot with parsley on top :D