I rarely eat or cook traditional Maltese food as I tend to prefer meals with more powerful flavours and shorter cooking times. However this particular recipe is nothing short of flavour and well worth the effort - the piquant stuffing is out of this world!
- 5 globe artichokes
- 2 tbsp white wine vinegar
- 1/2 crusty bread loaf, pulsed into breadcrumbs with some larger bits
- 6 anchovy fillets, chopped
- 5 cloves of garlic, minced
- bunch of parsley, finely chopped
- Zest of 1 small lemon (optional)
- 1 cup green olives, chopped
- Some fresh/dry mint
- Lots of freshly ground pepper
- Olive oil
Wash the globe artichokes well and trim the top of the artichokes. Keep about 2" of the stalk and put the rest of the stalk aside. Now grab the globe artichoke upside down and bang it several times on the chopping board (fun!) and open the leaves as to make space for the stuffing. Repeat this with all the globe artichokes.
Combine the stuffing ingredients together in a bowl along with some of the chopped reserved stalk, adding enough olive oil to bind the mixture together.
Spoon the stuffing into the globe artichokes in between all the leaves and gently push it with your fingers. Repeat this will all the globe artichokes.
Place the stuffed artichokes in a large pan. Make sure they are placed tightly together so that they won't move and the stuffing comes out. Pour enough water in the pan until it reaches the first layer of leaves. Add the vinegar to the water and bring to the boil. Cover the pan and reduce to a gentle simmer and leave to cook for an hour or until you pull at a leaf and it comes out easily.
Serve with boiled potatoes, steamed veggies, tuna, sott'oli and crusty Maltese bread spread with tomato paste and a drizzle of good olive oil on everything. Enjoy!!
Note: Those that are not used to this kind of meal and have no idea how to eat this. This is how..
Pull at one of the outer leaves and with two hands put it in your mouth and scrape the leaf along with the stuffing stuck to it with your teeth. Discard the leaf in a separate bowl. Repeat with all the leaves until you reach the very tender heart which everyone loves. You will get the hang of it quicker than u think don't worry!