Serves 4 as a side dish, 6 as an appetizer.             Ingredients:
  • 2 medium or large artichokes
  • 6 medium garlic cloves, peeled: 4 cloves minced, 2 cloves thinly sliced
  • 2 lemons, halved crosswise (smooth-skinned lemons that are heavy for their size will yield more juice)
  • 3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter, cut into 4 pieces
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 2 sprigs thyme, (optional)
Instructions: Preparation:
  1. Wash the artichokes under cold water and dry with a clean towel. Cut off the top 1 1/2 inches of the artichoke.
  2. Trim the stem end, leaving about an inch or so attached. With kitchen scissors, clip the thorny tips of each leaf as well as the small leaves attached to the stem and base.
  3. Halve each artichoke lengthwise and rub with a lemon half to prevent the cut sides from turning brown as quickly.
Steam:
  1. Fill a large pot with water to the depth of 2 inches. Place steamer basket on top, cover and bring to a boil.
  2. Once the water is boiling, reduce heat to medium and arrange the artichoke halves and one of the lemon halves in a single layer in the steamer basket.
  3. Steam for about 12 minutes (for medium artichokes) to cook the artichokes halfway. While the artichokes are steaming, preheat the oven to 425˚ and prepare the garlic paste (see below).
  4. Transfer artichokes to a small roasting pan and allow to cool slightly. Scoop out the choke (the fuzzy white area at the center of the artichoke) and the smallest, spiniest leaves above it, being careful not to remove too much of the meat underneath.
Garlic paste:
  1. Combine 1 teaspoon of salt with the minced garlic in a mortar and pestle or in a small bowl. Using pestle, or the back of a spoon in a small bowl, mash the garlic into a rough paste.
  2. After they have cooled, thoroughly rub each artichoke half (cut side AND outside) with garlic paste, making sure to get between the leaves, and place cut-side up in the roasting pan.
  3. Spread the sliced garlic, thyme sprigs (if using), and remaining lemon halves cut-side down in the pan. Drizzle with olive oil and distribute the 4 pieces of butter around the pan.
Roast:
  1. Cover tightly with foil and roast at 425˚ for 20-35 minutes, or until one of the outside leaves can be easily pulled off.
  2. Transfer artichokes to a plate and pour the lemon garlic butter from the pan into a small bowl. Taste.
  3. Add more butter, a squeeze of roasted lemon, and season with salt if needed.