Our Artichoke plants are getting huge and are starting to get artichokes. I hate to cut them because they’re so beautiful when they bloom, the choke turns purple! Last year I let a bunch of them flower and then go to seed, so I ended up with volunteer artichokes all over my back yard. We have about 15 artichoke plants in the back yard, and this one is the biggest and has the most artichokes on it. Time for stuffed artichokes!
To make stuffed artichokes, In a saute pan, cook 1 small chopped sweet onion, 1 minced shallot, and 3 minced garlic cloves in 1 tblsp olive oil on low heat until translucent. Let cool. Combine with 1 cup Panko bread crumbs, and 1/2 cup whole-wheat breadcrumbs, 1/4 cup finely crumbled feta cheese, 2 tblsp oil-packed sun-dried tomatoes, chopped, 1/4 cup minced fresh basil, 2 tblsp fresh chopped parsley, 1/2 tsp granulated garlic, salt & freshly ground pepper, and the juice of 1/2 lemon. At this point you can taste, does it need salt, pepper or garlic powder? Season to your liking.
Now scramble an egg with 2 tblsp water and mix that in. The egg binds everything together so the bread crumbs don’t explode all over the place when you eat it.
Now this part is a little bit tricky. Take 4 medium sized artichokes and chop the tops off, then using a kitchen scissors, snip the sharp points off the big leaves all the way around, and squeeze lemon all over the cut parts to prevent them from browning. Cut the bottom off so it sits flat, & rub w/ lemon. Cut down into the center of the artichoke & remove the center leaves, revealing the choke. Remove the furry choke by scraping with a spoon, being careful not to scrape away the artichoke heart.
Squeeze some more of the lemon juice into the center to prevent browning. Open the leaves out and start stuffing bits of the bread crumb and cheese mixture in between the leaves. Fill the center with the mixture too.
Bake in a covered casserole with an inch of water at the bottom for about 45 minutes to an hour until the artichoke is cooked through.
Garnish with lemon juice and lemon zest.