Carciofi alla romana (Roman-style artichokes)

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PRESENTATION

Each ingredient has a story that starts with its own characteristics. Leathery leaves, tender heart: in this recipe we tell you about the beauty of the artichoke with a traditional dish from Lazio, the Carciofi alla romana (Roman-style artichokes). Nothing is left to chance in the preparation of this simple and fragrant side dish: from the choice of the variety of artichoke, the violet (or Romanesco artichoke), which is distinguished from the others by its rounder shape and its thornless leaves. Then the mint (or mentuccia better still), the clove of garlic to flavor the inside. And tightly squeezed into a pan, the magic happens: with a sweet and slow cooking this hard peeled flower is transformed into a delicious soft and fragrant side dish. Whether you are from Rome or not, serving Carciofi alla romana will always be a success! The origins of this dish are once again to be found in antiquity when, to feed themselves, farmers used what the land provided them, in this case artichokes.

INGREDIENTS
Purple artichokes 4
Mint 1 small bunch - or mentuccia
Garlic 1 clove
Fine salt to taste
Black pepper to taste
Extra virgin olive oil ½ cup (100 ml)
Water 1 cup (250 g)
Lemons 1
Preparation

How to prepare Carciofi alla romana (Roman-style artichokes)

To prepare the Roman-style artichokes, start by cutting the lemon in half 1. Then fill a rather large bowl with water and squeeze in the half lemon 2 and rub the remaining part on your hands, so they will not blacken while cleaning the artichokes. Take your artichokes and start removing the outer leaves by tearing them off by hand 3.

Then cut off the end of the stem 4 and the tip of your artichoke 5. With your hands spread the artichoke and using a small knife, or a corer, also cut out the central part so as to eliminate the inner beard 6.

Also peel the stem and round off the end using a sharp knife 7. Place the artichoke inside the acidulated water 8 and continue in the same way for the others. Cover with absorbent paper to keep the artichokes soaked in water 9, keep aside and in the meantime prepare the filling.

Take the mint, roll the leaves and cut them with a knife 10 without chopping them too much. Then take the garlic, peel it, cut it first into slices 11 and then mince it. Add it to the mint 12,

add a pinch of salt 13, black pepper and mix everything together. Drain the artichokes and shake them slightly to remove the excess water, then use the freshly prepared mix to stuff them 14. Rub them with salt and pepper on the cutting board 15.

At this point transfer them upside down into a pan 16, keeping them fairly close together. Then pour in both the oil 17 and the water 18 so that the artichokes are covered up to the top of the stem.

Cover with a lid 19 and cook for about 30 minutes over low heat. They will be tender 20 and you can serve your Carciofi alla romana (Roman-style artichokes) warm 21.

Storage

The Roman-style artichokes can be kept in the refrigerator for 2-3 days at most soaked in their cooking liquid. If you have used all fresh ingredients you can freeze them, sealed in an airtight container.

Tips

If you can't find mentuccia, which has a more delicate taste, you can opt for mint or parsley. These artichokes are also excellent for dressing pasta, just chop them after cooking!