Today I picked a large bucket of the much more friendly type and made up a jar of Marinated Artichoke Hearts. You can use them in salads, vegetarian pizza, pasta dishes and they are nice in a vegetarian lasagna.
Marinated Artichoke Hearts
6-8 medium or 10-12 medium artichokes
1 1/2 cups extra virgin olive oil, plus extra for bottling
2 tablespoons white wine vinegar
4 cloves garlic, thinly sliced
1 teaspoon chilli flakes
2 tablespoons chopped oregano leaves
2 bay leaves
1 teaspoon whole black peppercorns
1 teaspoon salt
Finely grate the zest of the lemon and set aside. To make the lemon water, squeeze the juice of both lemons into a large bowl and add 8 cups of water. If you don't have surplus lemons use 3 tablespoons of white wine vinegar. To prepare the artichokes, cut off the top three quarters of each head and discard. Use a sharp paring knife to trim the bases and stems down to their pale centers. Scoop out and discard the hairy choke in the center, dunking the hearts into the lemon water as you work to prevent them from browning. Cut in quarters if large or half if they are small and soak in the lemon water, turning to ensure that they are fully immersed. If soaking for more that 15 minutes place a plate in the bowl to keep them submerged.
Combine reserved lemon zest with all remaining ingredients in a medium pot. Add the well drained artichokes and bring the oil to a strong sizzle over a high heat. Reduce the heat to very low , cover and cook, stirring now and then, until artichokes are tender. This will take around 15 - 20 minutes. Remove from the heat and allow to cool in the oil. Transfer to clean jars, then pour the unstrained cooking oil over the top. If storing for more that a few days add more oil to cover and seal hot in sterilized jars.
If you don't have fresh artichokes you can use two tins of artichoke hearts and cook them for five minutes in the flavoured oil.