RECIPE: Italian Sausage Stuffed Artichokes

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Italian Sausage Stuffed Artichokes ~ Serves 6

Spring brings us big, beautiful artichokes which I love to stuff and serve as a first course or entree. Sweet Rockside Ranch Italian sausage goes perfectly with artichokes and this recipe. Serve it with Marinara sauce as a dip.

6 medium to large artichokes, rinsed

½ lemon

4 Tbls olive oil, halved

1 ½ cups fresh breadcrumbs, I like to us good sourdough whole wheat; nuts and seeds are fine

1 pound bulk Italian sausage or raw links, split and casing removed

1 medium onion, diced

2 to 4 cloves garlic, minced

2 Tbls each fresh mince oregano and parsley (or 1 tsp. each dried) You can also substitute ¼ cup minced fresh basil

¼ cup Parmigiano-Reggiano

¼ pine nuts

Salt and fresh cracked pepper

1 cup chicken broth, white wine or water

2 cups marinara sauce (optional)

 

To cook artichokes:

Rinse the artichokes in running cold water. Slice about ¾-inch to an inch off the tip of the artichoke using a serrated knife. Next, cut off the tips of the petals using scissors and remove the small petals at the base. Pull off any smaller petals towards the base.

Last, cut off the stem so that the artichoke can sit flat. Reserve the stem. Rub the artichoke with the cut lemon.

Steam the artichokes and stems until almost done but not quite tender, between 20 and 35 minutes depending on the size. Use a sharp knife to pierce through the bottom of the heart to check for doneness.

 

Meanwhile:

Preheat oven to 350˚F

Evenly spread the breadcrumbs on flat baking pan or cookie sheet and bake until toasted but not completely dry, 5 to 8 minutes. In other words, don’t be too picky but do watch them closely so they don’t burn.

In a sauté pan over medium heat, sauté the pork, breaking it into small pieces, until it is cooked through and crumbled. Drain on paper towel.

Add two tablespoons olive oil to the pan and then the onion and garlic sautéing until the onion is tender.

Add the onions and garlic to a medium bowl along with the sausage, bread crumbs, herbs, pine nuts and cheese and toss just to blend. Season to taste with salt and pepper.

Once the artichokes are cool enough to handle, gently spread the leaves to open the artichoke giving room to add the filling.

Remove the smallest leaves in the very center and using a teaspoon, scrape out the fuzzy choke making sure you get the fuzz out of the crevices.

Lightly fill the artichoke center with filling as well as in-between the leaves.

Place the artichokes in a baking dish that has just enough room to hold them snuggly.

Drizzle with remaining two tablespoons of olive oil and the one cup of broth.

Carefully pour water into the bottom of the dish (avoiding artichokes) up to ¼-inch.

Bake for 30 to 40 minutes or until the top of the stuffing is lightly browned and the artichokes are hot.

Serve the marinara sauce as a dip on the side.

 


About the Chef

Barbie Aknin of Community Cuisine has provided cooking instruction in corporate settings, cooking schools, private events, and in her own home for more than twenty years.

Community Cuisine brings people together in the kitchen to cook, to learn, and to celebrate. We teach the art, technique, and value of cooking by sharing wisdom from culinary traditions past and present. All classes incorporate professional cooking methodology that offers our students the tools they need to tackle any type of cuisine or diet.

To learn more about Community Cuisine, visit www.communitycuisine.com

 

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