Grilled Artichokes


Grilled Artichokes | The Kitten Kitchen

Sung to the tune of “O Tannenbaum

::clears throat::

Oh, artichokes.
Oh, artichokes.
I dip you in some butter.

Oh, artichokes.
Oh, artichokes.
I dip you in some butter.

You fill me up in summertime.
I eat you in a bunch-a bites.

Oh, artichokes.
Oh, artichokes.
I dip you in some butter.

If you don’t know already, now you do—I, Daniele Cusentino, love artichokes. Boiled, stuffed, grilled, you-name-it, I’ll eat it. I especially love artichoke hearts, and if there were an award available to people that can eat a jar in one sitting, I would be a contender.

Since we’re coming up on a long celebratory weekend here in the good ol’ USA, I figured I would share a grilled, easily transportable version of artichokes to take wherever your family units will be gathering.

Disclaimer: Be prepared to answer a few questions since people tend to get weird around artichokes. It’s only because they look strange, and people aren’t quite sure how to eat them. Teach them, you shall. And if you’re clueless, too, that’s okay! You’ll be prepared to field all the inquiries after reading this entire blog post.

Grilled Artichoke Halves
Serves 1-2

1 small lemon, halved
1 artichoke, trimmed and halved*
Lemon Garlic Oil (recipe below)
Spicy Aioli (recipe below)

*Tip: Slice approximately the top third of the artichoke with a really sharp knife, then snip the tops of the lower leaves with scissors.

1. Bring a large pot of water to boil, and preheat grill to medium-high heat.
2. Squeeze lemon into boiling water, and toss the rinds in.
3. Gently lower artichoke halves into boiling water, and lower heat to medium.
4. Cook until tender, and leaves easily pull away when tugged, about 20 minutes.
5. Mix lemon garlic oil and spicy aioli ingredients with a spoon in two small bowls, then set aside.
6. Drain artichokes.
7. When cool enough to handle, remove the fuzzy part of the artichoke (below the part that was purple before cooked) and any pointy inner leaves with your fingers or a spoon.*
8. On a cutting board, brush artichokes halves generously with lemon garlic oil, then grill each side with lid closed until slightly blackened, about 5-10 minutes on each side.
9. Serve with extra lemon garlic oil, spicy aioli or melted butter. Provide an extra plate for guests to discard leaves.

*Tip: In a rush? Cool the artichokes under cold running water.

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Lemon Garlic Oil
Makes 3/4 cup

1/2 small lemon, juiced
3/4 cup olive oil
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground pepper

Spicy Aioli
Makes 1/2 cup

1/2 cup mayonnaise
1/2 small lemon, juiced
1/2 teaspoon Sriracha
1 clove garlic, minced
Salt and pepper, to taste

How to Eat an Artichoke
1. Grab a leaf.
2. Dip the leaf bottom in oil, aioli, butter or whatever is available.
3. Gently pull the artichoke meat from the bottom half of the leaf with your teeth.
4. Discard leaf.
5. Repeat steps 1-4.
6. When all that’s left is the tender bottom area around the stem, YOU’VE STRUCK GOLD! Grab and eat it (and the stem nub!) quickly. You won’t be disappointed.

Tip: Print the little how-to snippet above, and set it next to the plate so guests feel comfortable eating without asking for assistance.

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