Chef Kitty Morse recalls her first taste of roasted carcioffi alla romana (artichokes).
I went to Italy after college, and stayed with friends in Rome. Half century later, I still recall the tiny, roasted carcioffi alla romana my hostess prepared. If you grow artichokes, pick them when they are very small (1 to 2 inches in diameter.) Helene Beck, who owns an organic orchard of exotic citrus in Fallbrook, CA, that includes organic kumquat and persimmons and kaffir limes, let me pick my way through her abundant vegetable patch. YOU can order Helene’s cookbook, Jewels from my Grove, and her luscious persimmon and kumquat sauces and blood orange sauces and preserves at www.lavignefruits.com.
Be sure and look for Chef Morse’s new cookbook “Edible Flowers: A Kitchen Companion” published by Chefs Press. 2015, she writes that if you grow cilantro, let it go to seed, and add the delicate blooms to the salsa. http://www.chefspress.com
Carcioffi alla Romana
Preheat oven to 400 degrees F.
Prepare artichokes. Cut off stems. Remove all tough outer leaves until you have only the tenderest ones left. Cut off the top third. Cut the artichoke in half down the middle. Rub the cut sides with lemon juice so they don’t turn brown.
In a small bowl, mix the olive oil, salt, pepper and garlic. Set artichoke halves cut-side up in a roasting dish and drizzle with olive oil mixture.
Roast until artichokes are tender, about 40 minutes. (Serve warm or at room temperature.) Great roasted on the BBQ Grill.