Welcome to my kitchen! This is a blog that is evolving as my life does. I like food, but I don't have all the time in the world to cook. So lately, I'm going with simple, easy recipes. I may switch that up occassionally and post something time-intensive, but that isn't what I'm about these days. If that sounds like you - I hope you enjoy some of these recipes.

Sunday, July 25, 2010

Grilled Artichokes with Lemon Mayonnaise Dip

The only way to make an artichoke any more delicious is to grill it.  Jeff and I love to eat out at a restaurant here in Denver called the Cherry Creek Grill.  They have the most amazing seasonal grilled artichokes on their menu and I've always wanted to recreate them at home.  (Although whatever sauce they use is absolutely amazing and I have no idea what is in it.  I will have to see if the waiter will give me some insight next time we're there.)

Grilled Artichokes
Serves 4

2 cloves garlic
1 bay leaf

2 large artichokes
garlic powder
sea salt
freshly ground black pepper
1 lemon, halved
olive oil for drizzling

Fill a large pot with about 1" of water and add the garlic cloves and bay leaf to the water.  Place a steamer basket in the water and bring to a boil.

While waiting for the water to boil, prepare the artichokes by washing them then cutting about 1/4" off the end of each stem.  If you like, you can use a vegetable peeler to peel the tough outer layer of the stems away.  Cut about an inch off the tops and trim the pointy tips of the leaves with kitchen shears. 

Place on steamer basket and steam for 20-30 minutes depending on size of artichoke.  You will be able to insert a knife easily into the end of the stem when they are done.  Remove from the pot and set aside to cool for about 10 minutes.  Cut in halves or quarters depending on how many people you will be serving.  Using a sharp knife remove the choke and any purple leaves on the inside of each artichoke.

Preheat your grill.  I like the flavor of a charcoal grill but a gas grill works just fine.  Lightly spread leaves apart and sprinkle garlic powder, parsley, salt and pepper in between the leaves and on the inside.  Squeeze fresh lemon juice on top and drizzle the flat parts of each artichoke with olive oil. 

Grill the artichokes leaf-side down.  Then turn them over and grill just until the tips of the leaves char a little and get some flavor to them.  Remove and serve immediately(with lemon mayonnaise!).

(I forgot to cut out the chokes and inside leaves before we grilled these, so I just did it afterward.)

Lemon Mayonnaise 
Source: Emeril Lagasse, Food Network, slightly adapted by Amy's New Kitchen
Serves: 6-8 portions

2 lemons, halved
1 large egg*
2-3 Tbsp water
1/2 cup olive oil
1/2 cup vegetable oil
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp cayenne

Squeeze the lemon juice into the bowl of a small food processor.  Add the egg* and 1 Tbsp water and process for 20 seconds.  With the processor running slowly pour in the olive oil and vegetable oil through the feed tube and process until emulsified.  (Add additional water, 1 Tbsp at a time to thin the mayo if you like.)  Add the salt and cayenne, pulse to blend.  Transfer to an airtight container and refrigerate for at least an hour before serving.  (Mayo can be refrigerated for up to 24 hours.)

*RAW EGG WARNING (from FoodNetwork.com)
Food Network Kitchens suggest caution in consuming raw and lightly-cooked eggs due to the slight risk of Salmonella or other food-borne illness. To reduce this risk, we recommend you use only fresh, properly-refrigerated, clean, grade A or AA eggs with intact shells, and avoid contact between the yolks or whites and the shell.

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