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Artichokes saganaki

Aγκινάρες σαγανάκι (artchokes saganaki) Source: supplied by Angela Nicolettou

Try an unusual dish inspired by the famous Greek 'saganaki'. Angela Nicolettou used the 'saganaki' method to create a vegetarian dish which can be served as a meze or a side dish.

Artichoke saganaki

Ingredients

4 whole artichokes

½ cup white wine

1 garlic clove

3 tbs extra virgin olive oil

50g fresh sourdough breadcrumbs

1 tbs capers

2 tbs kefalograviera, grated (or parmesan)

1 tbs parsley, chopped

1 tbs dill, chopped

2 lemons (zest & juice of 1)

Method

Fill a large bowl with water and squeeze in the lemon juice from one of the lemons, keeping the lemon halves to rub the peeled artichokes with.

To prepare the artichokes, begin by cutting off the stalk and removing the outer coarse leaves of the artichoke until you reach the pale green and soft ones. With a sharp knife cut the top sharp parts of the leaves. Use a small knife to peel the base part of the artichoke and then cut in half. With the tip of your knife remove the ‘hairy’ parts of the core. Rub each artichoke piece with the lemon half and place in the acidulated water. Repeat with remaining artichokes.

To prepare the crumb, place the breadcrumbs, 1 tbs olive oil, capers, cheese, parsley, dill and lemon zest in a small bowl and mix well to combine. Set aside until needed.

Take the artichoke out of the water and drain flat side down on some kitchen towel.

Heat a small to medium sized saganaki pan or a fry pan that can go in the oven, and add the remaining 2 tbs of olive oil. Peel and smash the garlic clove so it just breaks but remains whole, and add to the oil. Fry the garlic for a minute to flavour the oil and then remove from the pan. Discard the garlic.

Add the artichokes to the pan, and fry on both sides until just coloured but not cooked through, about 5 minutes. Season with salt and pepper and turn artichokes so that they are flat side down in the pan. Add the wine and simmer for about 15 minutes with a lid on until artichokes are just soft.

Heat oven to 200C.

Remove pan with the artichokes form the stove, and turn so that the flat or cut side is facing up. Sprinkle the prepared crumb on top of the artichokes and place in the hot oven until the crumb is golden and crispy. About 5 to 10 minutes.

Serve with a squeeze of lemon juice.

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