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Globe Artichokes Roman Style

ingredients

4 very fresh young artichokes
1 clove garlic
2 tbsp finely chopped parsley
3 oz (80 g) grated mature hard cheese
best-quality olive oil
1/2 light stock cube
salt and black pepper

method

1. The artichokes must be young and freshly picked or they will not be tender enough for this dish. Rinse, then cut the stalks. Peel away the tough section round the base, and strip off the outer layer of the stalks. Drop into a bowl containing cold water mixed with lemon juice to prevent discoloration.

2. Chop the stalks with the garlic and parsley. Transfer to a bowl, stir in the cheese and work in the oil a little at a time to make a thick paste, seasoning with salt and pepper.

3. Strip off the lower, outer leaves; cut off the top half of the artichoke; push the inner leaves apart to reach the feathery choke inside and remove this, leaving only the heart and the remaining leaves.

4. Snip off their tips. Drain then place them upside down on a board and press down hard while turning the artichoke from side to side to make the leaves open out wide like a flower.

5. Pack the space inside the artichokes with the prepared stuffing. Place the artichokes the right way up in a pan large enough to contain them all snugly in one layer.

6. Pour in sufficient water to come one-third of the way up the side of the artichokes. Sprinkle plenty of olive oil all over them. Crumble the stock cube finely and sprinkle it into the water wherever there is a gap between the artichokes.

7. Heat until the water reaches boiling point, cover and simmer for 20 minutes. When the artichokes are tender, sprinkle with more oil and serve at once.

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