Recipe: Evan Kleiman’s Carciofi alla Giudea

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This week on Good Food, we’re tapping into our archives for the holiday weekend; the theme is traveling.  A segment that I love is Evan’s conversation with her good friend Elizabeth Minchilli, a writer living in Rome.  They talked about artichokes and the hundreds of ways that Italians eat them.  One way that Romans enjoy artichokes is fried: Carciofi alla Giudea.  Below is Evan’s recipe for the dish, which first appeared in Bon Appetit.

Keep reading for the recipe…

Carciofi alla Giudea

3 lemons, divided
12 baby artichokes
Olive oil (for frying)

Cut 1 lemon in half. Squeeze juice into large bowl; add lemon halves. Fill bowl 2/3 full with water. Working with 1 artichoke at a time, break off dark outer leaves until only pale green leaves remain. Trim end off stem and cut 1/2 inch off top of artichoke; add to lemon water. Repeat with remaining artichokes.

Fill another large bowl with ice water. Blanch artichokes in large saucepan of boiling salted water 10 seconds; transfer to ice water to cool completely. Remove artichokes from water and shake off excess moisture. Gently pry open leaves and press as flat as possible. Invert artichokes onto paper-towel-lined work surface and press to hold leaves open. Drain 30 minutes.

Line large baking sheet with paper towels. Add enough olive oil to heavy large saucepan to reach depth of 2 inches. Attach deep-fry thermometer to side of saucepan with tip submerged in oil. Heat oil over medium-high heat until thermometer registers 350 °F. Working with 1 artichoke at a time, firmly grasp stem end of artichoke with long tongs. Submerge artichoke in oil to bottom of saucepan, pressing to keep leaves spread open, and fry until leaves hold shape, about 15 seconds. Release artichoke (it will turn stem side down). Repeat with 3 more artichokes and continue frying until artichoke hearts are just tender when pierced with knife, about 4 minutes longer. Using tongs, remove artichokes from oil; transfer, stem side up, to paper towels, pressing slightly to hold leaves open. Turn artichokes over to drain on paper towels. Repeat with remaining artichokes.

Sprinkle with salt.