Remember To Make Memories At The Table

Remember To Make Memories At The Table

Nonna used To Say...

Got Agita? It's Not What You Eat; It's What Eats You

Saturday, April 30, 2011

Artichokes Stuffed With Salami & Mushrooms

Nothing says spring like fresh, green vegetables. My favorites are asparagus and artichokes. Knowing that bright, red, plump tomatoes and sweet corn-on-the-cob will soon be in market bins makes my heart sing. At our Easter meal, stuffed artichokes are enjoyed. I can never understand anyone relishing steamed artichoke leaves dipped in a mayonnaise based sauce or melted butter. I guess it looks like dainty-eating, but come on, hearty is so much better. A stuffed artichoke is the way to go!

So the artichokes at the market were deep green, fragrant and heavy.  They squeaked when squeezed, so they were keepers. The price was right. I bought only two as I'm the only one who will dine on these beauties. No company's the weekend after Easter and most everyone is still coming down from the excitement of this sacred holiday. My husband, Steve, isn't a big fan of this wonderful vegetable, so two were enough. Of course, once I had made them....four would have been better!

Eating an artichoke is an experience similar to eating a crab, a hands-on affair. The tender "meat" on each leaf is removed by putting it between your front teeth and pulling the leaf through. It's a slow, methodical process that elicits sighs of contentment. Every leaf is scraped clean, the stuffing that clings to it savored, then a hearty mound of center stuffing is enjoyed...finally the prize is unearthed, the heart or flower of the artichoke.

mushrooms, salami, onion, garlic
sauteing in skillet
A stuffed artichoke isn't a side dish...nope, it's a meal in itself. It takes some preparation time, but considering it's a main course, it's not much more work than any other meal.  I stuffed these with sauteed mushrooms, diced hard salami, and breadcrumbs among a few other ingredients. The artichokes depicted are over-stuffed. The moist filling is enough for four, but since I only had two, I packed these babies to overflow. I didn't want to serve this with anything too heavy, so my choice was a cup of zucchini soup and plain, sliced tomatoes.  This meal is the epitome of an eating experience and more delicious than words can describe. And that's Italian!

Artichoke Stuffed With Salami & Mushrooms
2-4 fresh Artichokes, each leaf snipped, middle of choke cleaned out
4 slices of Hard Salami, diced (a 1/4 lb chunk will do fine)
8 oz of button mushrooms, cleaned and diced
2 tablespoon onion, diced
1 egg
2 cups flavored breadcrumbs (1 1/2 c will do for 2 artichokes)
1 cup vegetable broth
1 cup white wine
3 fresh basil leaves, snipped into pieces
5 cloves garlic, reserve 2 for the cooking pot
olive oil

In a skillet, saute mushrooms, onion, & 3 cloves of garlic in a bit of olive oil. When almost golden add salami.  Cook for about 5 minutes, then set aside to cool. While this is sauteing and cooling,  prepare the artichokes. Turn upside down and rap artichoke on the counter to open the leaves.  Cut off stem, so the artichoke can sit up on the plate. Snip tip of each leaf, then with a spoon clean out the center removing any of the prickly inside. Rinse in cold water and let dry upside-down on a paper towel.  In a bowl, add
mushroom & salami mixture
with breadcrumbs
           breadcrumbs & beaten egg and cooled mushroom/salami mixture. Mix well and add fresh basil leaves. Mix. Fill center and in between leaves with breadcrumb mixture.
Drizzle olive oil into a wide pot. Heat and add remaining 2 cloves of garlic. Combine vegetable broth and white wine in a measuring cup. When garlic is just golden, add 1/4 cup of the liquid. Stir. Place stuffed artichokes in pot.  Drizzle tops with a bit of olive oil. Lower heat to a simmer.  Cover and cook for 45 minutes. As often as possible, check that bottom of artichokes arent' burning. Baste with remaining liquid to keep vegetables moist. Test a leaf to be sure it is soft.
Enjoy the artichokes either warm or cold.
Artichokes with tips snipped
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Remember To Make Memories At The Table


  1. whoa is me, this is the way to stuff an artichoke - hey, you guys up there know a thing or two 'bout good family eats, I take no offense from any teasing whatsoever, kinda like it in fact, that is why I know you appreciate a good recipe when you see it, hope you try my 'chili' one day, it will knock your socks off, think of it as an Italian camp stew...(hope you understand my humor too) don't know about the beans though... thanks for stopping by and take care, have a blessed Mothers Day

  2. So nice to hear from you, Drick. An honor to have you visit my blog. I've made and raved about your chicken/kielbasa chili. Have never had a better chili in my life! I know that a "true" beef chili has no beans, but I love red kidney beans in mine...added protein and more filling. You gotta try this artichoke's a keeper and perfect for a manly-man dinner. Thanks for the well wishes..may the Moms in your family have a blessed Mother's Day, too. N