Grilled and Smothered Artichokes

Artichoke, Recipes
artichokes

Ingredients

  • 3 medium artichokes (stems attached), trimmed, peeled, quartered, and choke removed
  • Zest of 1 lemon
  • 2 large lemons, 1 halved and juiced, 1 quartered
  • 1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
  • 1/3 cup extra-virgin olive oil
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1/2 teaspoon fine sea salt
  • 1/8 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper, plus extra to taste
  • 1/2 cup loosely packed fresh flat-leaf parsley leaves, coarsely chopped
  • Coarse or flaked sea salt to taste, for finishing

Serves 2 to 4

 

  1. Set a collapsible steamer basket in a large pot and add enough water to skim the bottom of the basket. Bring the water to a boil over high heat. Place the artichokes in a shallow layer in the basket. Steam, covered, adding more water as needed, until the leaves release easily when pulled and the hearts are tender when pierced with a paring knife, 15 to 20 minutes.
  2. Meanwhile, in a large bowl whisk together the lemon zest, lemon juice, balsamic vinegar, olive oil, garlic, fine sea salt, 1/8 teaspoon of pepper, and three quarters of the parsley.
  3. Add the steamed artichokes to the lemon marinade and toss to distribute the marinade evenly. Let stand until the marinade has infused the artichokes, at least 30 minutes or up to 3 hours. Alternatively, cover the bowl and refrigerate overnight.
  4. About 10 to 15 minutes before you plan to cook, heat a grill to medium-high heat.
  5. Use tongs to transfer the artichokes, cut side down, to the grill; keep the bowl of marinade next to the grill. Cook the artichokes until golden grill marks appear, 5 minutes, then flip them.
  6. Place the lemon quarters flesh side down on the grill. Cook the artichokes and lemons until they are lightly charred and the artichokes are completely tender, 3 to 5 minutes. Transfer the lemons to a serving platter. Return the artichokes to the bowl of marinade and toss to coat evenly. Arrange the artichokes on the serving platter, and sprinkle all with the remaining parsley, coarse or flaked sea salt, and additional pepper. Serve immediately.

Turkish Carrot Yogurt Dip

Recipes
carrotyogurt

Ingredients

  • 1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil, plus extra for finishing
  • 3 medium to large carrots (10 to 12 ounces total), peeled, shredded on the large holes of a box grater
  • 1/3 cup pine nuts (or 1/3 cup finely chopped walnuts)
  • 3/4 teaspoon fine sea salt, plus extra as needed
  • 2 cups low-fat or full-fat plain Greek yogurt
  • 1 to 2 garlic cloves, finely grated on a Microplane, pressed, or crushed into a paste

Makes about 2 1/2 cups

  1. Heat the oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add a pinch of the carrots to the oil to test it: The oil is ready if the carrots sizzle. Add the remaining carrots and cook, stirring frequently, until they begin to soften, about 6 minutes.
  2. Add the pine nuts and salt. Reduce the heat to medium and continue cooking, stirring occasionally, until the carrots are completely soft and browning and the pine nuts are golden, another 5 to 6 minutes. Stir in the garlic and cook until it is incorporated and fragrant, another 30 seconds to 1 minute. Let cool briefly to warm
  3. Place the yogurt in a medium-size bowl. Stir in the warm carrot mixture, and season with salt to taste
  4. Transfer the dip to a serving bowl, and drizzle the top with olive oil. The dip will keep, in an airtight container in the refrigerator, for up to 5 days.

NOTES: You can easily adjust the yield based on the quantities you have on hand and the number of people you are serving. The ratios do not need to be exact. Add a little more yogurt or throw in an extra carrot and a little more oil. Just make sure to let the carrots sizzle for a good long while, until they are soft and browned at the edges. When summer squash are in season, shredded zucchini makes an excellent addition. Swap 1 small zucchini for 1 carrot.

Spring Fritto Misto

Recipes
fritto-misto
Ingredients

  • 3/4 cup all-purpose flour
  • 3/4 cup finely milled semolina flour
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon fine sea salt
  • 1 cup buttermilk
  • Canola oil, for frying
  • 6 to 8 asparagus spears, woody ends removed, cut into 2-inch lengths (avoid pencil-thin asparagus and jumbo asparagus)
  • 1/2 small fennel bulb, halved, stem end trimmed, core intact to hold layers together, cut into 1/4-inch-thick slices
  • 4 ounces (about 1 1/2 cups) sugar snap peas, tips and strings removed
  • 4 ounces cremini or button mushrooms, cleaned, stems removed (larger mushrooms halved)
  • Flaked sea salt, for finishing
  • 1 lemon, cut into wedges, for serving
  • Tarragon Yogurt Sauce, for serving (optional)

Serves 6

  1. Whisk together the all-purpose flour, semolina flour, baking powder, and salt in a medium-size bowl. Place the mixture in a shallow rectangular dish or pan that will accommodate all of the vegetable shapes and sizes. Place the buttermilk in a separate but equally sized dish. Line a rimmed baking sheet with paper towels or parchment paper and set it next to the stove.
  2. Pour enough canola oil in a large saucepan or deep saute pan to fill the pan about one-third full. Heat the oil over medium-high heat until it shimmers: Test its readiness by dropping in one vegetable piece. It should immediately sizzle and steadily simmer around the edges. Alternatively, for a more accurate gauge, attach an instant-read thermometer to the pan; the oil is ready when the temperature registers between 365° and 370°F.
  3. Working in batches, dip the vegetable pieces in the buttermilk, allowing any excess to drip off, then dredge them in the flour mixture. Once coated, lift the vegetable pieces, gently shake off any excess flour, and carefully lower them into the hot oil. Do not overcrowd the pan. Fry the vegetables, using tongs to turn them gently, until they are golden brown all over, 1 to 3 minutes. Remove the vegetables with a spider or slotted spoon and transfer them to the prepared baking sheet. Sprinkle the finished vegetables lightly with flaked sea salt. Repeat until all the vegetables are cooked, adjusting the heat as needed to crisp the vegetables without burning them.
  4. Arrange the finished fritto misto on a platter and serve immediately with lemon wedges, and with the yogurt sauce alongside if you wish.

Potato Gnocchi with Sweet Peas and Gorgonzola Sauce

Recipes

gnocchi

For the Gnocchi

  • 1 pound (about 2 large) russet potatoes, rinsed and scrubbed
  • 1 cup all-purpose flour, plus extra as needed
  • Fine sea salt
  • 1/8 teaspoon freshly ground white pepper1 large egg, beaten

For the Gorgonzola Sauce

  • 1 tablespoon unsalted butter
  • 1 tablespoon minced shallots
  • 3/4 cup heavy (whipping) cream
  • 1/2 cup vegetable stock, preferably homemade or store-bought
  • 1/2 cup fresh or frozen peas
  • 1/4 teaspoon fine sea salt, plus extra as needed
  • 1/8 teaspoon freshly ground white pepper, plus extra as needed
  • 1/8 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 3 ounces Gorgonzola cheese, crumbled
  • 1/4 cup freshly grated parmesan cheese, plus extra for serving
  • Chopped fresh mint and parsley leaves, for serving

Serves 4 to 6

  1. Make the gnocchi: Place the potatoes in a large pot and add cold water to cover them by a depth of 3 inches. Bring to a boil over high heat and cook over medium-high heat until the potatoes are tender, 35 to 40 minutes. Drain the potatoes and let cool to the touch, about 10 minutes.
  2. When the potatoes have cooled, use a paring knife to loosen the skins and peel them. Pass the peeled potatoes through a potato ricer or food mill and onto a baking sheet; let cool completely
  3. Lightly flour a work surface (ideally a wooden board) and pile the riced potatoes on top. Shape them into a mound with your hands and create a well in the center.
  4. Stir. teaspoon of salt and the pepper into the beaten egg. Pour the egg mixture into the well and, working quickly, work the egg into the potato and gradually add the flour, kneading the dough as you go. The dough should be soft but firm and easy to handle; add an additional 1 to 2 tablespoons of flour if it is too sticky.
  5. Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Meanwhile, lightly flour the baking sheet, as well as your work surface and hands. Divide the dough into 6 pieces and roll out each piece with your hands against the board to form a 1/2-inch-thick rope. Dust with more flour if the ropes are sticking to the board. Cut the ropes into 3/4-inch pieces and lightly press each with your thumb or the back of a fork to flatten slightly. Transfer the gnocchi to the baking sheet as you work through the dough, keeping them in a single layer, and cover with a clean kitchen towel.
  6. Make the Gorgonzola sauce: In a medium saucepan, melt the butter over medium heat. Add the shallots and cook until they begin to soften and become fragrant, about 1 minute. Add the cream and stock and bring it to a simmer. Continue to simmer until the mixture reduces and thickens into a thin sauce with some body, 4 to 6 minutes. (It will thicken further when you add the cheese.) Stir in the peas, 1/4 teaspoon of salt, 1/8 teaspoon of pepper, and the nutmeg, and simmer for 1 minute more. Remove from the heat and stir in the Gorgonzola and parmesan. Adjust salt and pepper to taste. Cover to keep warm while you boil the gnocchi. the beaten egg. Pour the egg mixture into the well and, working quickly, work the egg into the potato and gradually add the flour, kneading the dough as you go. The dough should be soft but firm and easy to handle; add an additional 1 to 2 tablespoons of flour if it is too sticky.
  7. Working in two batches, add half of the gnocchi to the boiling water and stir once after each addition. As soon as the gnocchi rise to the surface, 3 to 4 minutes, use a spider or slotted spoon to transfer them to serving bowls. While waiting for the next batch to cook and rise, check the sauce. It should have a loose consistency. If it has become too thick, thin it with a small spoonful of the cooking water; stir well to incorporate it.
  8. Top the finished batch of gnocchi with the sauce, an extra shaving of parmesan, and a pinch of fresh herbs; repeat with the second batch. Serve immediately.