Food Flirt

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Location: Petaluma, California, United States

Jacqueline is an international award winning journalist whose stories about food never fail to tantalize her reader's taste buds.

Thursday, March 25, 2010

Roast Potatoes and Baby Artichokes Roman Style

Spring is the time for baby artichokes and in Rome they are a big favorite.   I was lucky enough to find some at my local farmer’s market and decided to try out a recipe from my food travel’s file.

Roasted potatoes are a big favorite of mine.  This dish combines sautéed onion and garlic along with crunchy potatoes and tender, sliced baby artichokes, then sprinkled all over with grated Pecorino Romano cheese had me drooling.

Roast Potatoes and Baby Artichokes Roman Style

2 pounds Yukon gold or other good roasting potato
1-1/2 pounds baby artichokes (a package of frozen artichokes hearts can be substituted)
1 lemon (for acidulated water)
1/2 cup extra-virgin olive oil
4 large garlic cloves, sliced
1 large yellow onion sliced
1/2 teaspoons salt or to taste
1/4 teaspoon peperoncino or to taste
1/4 cup fresh oregano leaves (or 1 teaspoon dried)

Cut potatoes into thin slices and place in a large bowl.

Trim the artichokes, slice lengthwise ¼-inch thick and, if using fresh, put the slices in acidulated water, (which is sliced lemons squeezed into a bowl of cool water).

Pour 4 tablespoons of the olive oil into the skillet, stir in onion over medium heat. Cook for 4 minutes or so, stirring occasionally, until the onions soft and golden.  Add garlic and toss around in the pan until it wilts and gives off its oil and juice.

Drain the artichokes and drop them into the skillet. Stir and season with salt and the pepperoni. Cover the pan and cook for 8 to 10 minutes, stirring occasionally, until the artichokes are slightly wilted and can almost be pierced with a fork tip. (If using frozen artichokes, be sure to defrost them before adding to pan).  Scrape the softened artichokes, onion, garlic and all the oil from the skillet into the bowl with the potatoes.  Toss mixture until potatoes are coated, adding more olive oil if needed.

Pour mixture into a greased 9 x 12 baking dish, cover with aluminum foil and bake at 450 or until vegetables are fork tender, approximately 35 minutes.  Lower heat to 350.   Remove foil and sprinkle with grated Pecorino cheese and return to oven for an additional 15 minutes or until potatoes are crispy and golden brown.

Recommended wine:  Jacuzzi Family Vineyards Moscato Bianco.
Artichokes are notoriously difficult to pair with wine.  However, this Moscato Bianco has delicate floral aromas with lively citrus notes that beautifully accent this dish.  Moscato Bianco, also known as Muscat Canelli, is considered one of the world’s most ancient grape varieties. Originally grown primarily in the Piemonte district of Italy, Grapes for Jacuzzi’s wine are nurtured in the deep fertile soils of Sonoma County’s Alexander Valley.


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