Thursday, September 13, 2007

Simply Roasted Artichokes - Wrap and Roll

Today's video recipe clips is so simple it's hard to call it a recipe. It's more like an anti-recipe. As you'll see below I just list the ingredients, no amounts or measurements. This is how 95% of cooking should be done. So many people would enjoy cooking more, and make better food, if they got there faces out of those cookbooks and just started cooking. They treat the act of cooking like some scientific procedure (by the way, this rant excluded delicate baked goods, so save your emails).

Recipes are great for what ingredients you may want to use, but should be treated as an idea-started, not some government mandated edict. Cooking times are also useful, so we'll look at those, but as far as following a recipe to the letter when it comes to amounts of ingredients, I say "use the force Luke." We all have an inner Chef that will guide us as we cook, without the shackles of the measuring spoons and digital scales. "Top potatoes with 1 tablespoon of minced chives" ….what?? If I see that Food Network "Barefoot Contessa" lady measure parsley to sprinkle on something one more time, I going to lose it.

I much prefer proportions to recipes. For cous cous it's one part stock to one part cous cous, for dressings 3 to 1 oil to vinegar usually works out nicely, etc. If you visited a professional kitchen a few things would jump out at you right away. How fast-paced it is, how much cursing is being done, and how few recipes you see. So, today's artichoke is a celebration of the non-recipe; trim some chokes, drizzle some lemon and oil, stick in a garlic clove, sprinkle on some salt, and roast until delicious. I expect some comments from new cooks saying "but we need the measurements because we are not as experienced as you." No you don't. Use the force. Besides how do you know yours isn’t going to come out better because you used a little more or a little less of something? Cook, taste, adjust, and enjoy.

*Bonus foodie points if you are the first commenter to tell me what horrible Chef error I made on the plate in the photo.



Ingredients:
artichokes
lemon
garlic
olive oil
salt

36 comments:

Paul M. GA said...

I have a guess on what your error was. I am thinking that you put the garnish (I think it was parsely or a small sprig of rosemary) underneath what you were trying to garnish. I.E. Your Artichoke wasn't being garnished with Parsely. Your parsely was being garnished with Artichoke.

Chef John said...

I'll give you partial credit. The horrible error, and very common with young cooks, is that I used a sprig of rosemary to garnish a dish that wasn't prepared using any rosemary! Never garnish with something that doesnt have something to do with the dish. Rookie mistake. I didnt use any herbs, so I shouldnt have use one on the plate. It conveys to the guest or customer that there will be some herb in the dish.

Anonymous said...

:Grabs the mayo:
This looks great, I picked up some the other day and was wondering what I was going to do with them.

bri said...

Chef John, I'm right there with ya on the the whole "sticking to recipes" thing. I use them as a suggestion and then do my own thing. It always makes me laugh when friends of mine who have cooked the same dish dozens of times, always haul out the recipe. Couldn't you adjust it a little? Discover something new about it? I love your roasting artichokes idea. I've always steamed, but at restaurants, love the roasted ones. I'll have to try it out when they are in season again. Thanks for the suggestion.

Chef John said...

Nigella Lawson (whom our cat is named after) did a lecture entitled "The Tyranny of the Recipe" I couldn't make it, but wish I could have heard it.

Anonymous said...

Yeah, Gordon Ramsey would have torn you up for that rosemary garnish Lol.

Chef John said...

As he should! He would have called me a f**king donkey!

Anonymous said...

Now that you've revealed you have cat, how about a picture of your furry friend named Nigella?

Jewels said...

This rocks! Artichokes are my very favorite food of all time, but I grew up steaming them, it never even crossed my mind to roast it. I promise to do this next time I make artichokes.

Thank you Chef John!

Chef John said...

Thanks all.

Sorry no cat pictures! Like I said before, i don't want my blog to become a blog. Now if you email me (and make a huge donation) I will be happy to mail you a picture. ; )

Anonymous said...

oh is the error that you didn't trim the outer leaves of the artichoke? by, the way whose hand was that closing the oven door, it looks much smaller than yours. It looks almost like a child's hand.
-kary

Chef John said...

No,you should not trim the large leaves. even the bottoms of those have some meat to eat after the long roasting. The error was explained in my comment above. Also, that was my sous chef (wife) closing the oven..good eye!

Stephanie said...

I got yelled at by my chef the last time I used rosemary as a garnish - not because it wasn't in the dish but because a sprig of rosemary is "uneatable". =\

Trewg said...

Thanks for the recipe, here is a recipe using artichoke in a dip.

Tangy Artichoke Toppers

1 can (14 oz.) artichoke hearts, drained, finely chopped
1/3 cup Italian Fat Free Dressing
4 oz. (1/2 of 8 oz. pkg.) philadelphia Neufchatel Cheese, 1/3 Less Fat than Cream Cheese, softened
2 Tbsp. chopped roasted red peppers
1 Tbsp. chopped fresh parsley
48 triscuit Low Sodium Crackers



MIX artichokes, dressing and Neufchatel cheese with electric mixer on medium speed until well blended. Stir in peppers and parsley.
REFRIGERATE at least 1 hour. Spread 2 tsp. artichoke mixture on each cracker. Serve

Teresa said...

I can't wait to make this. The artichokes today at the supermarket looked mediocre at best, so I might need to make a special trip to Whole Food, i.e. Whole Paycheck to get some decent looking artichokes.

Thanks for the un-recipe. Looks incredible as usual.

nikkipolani said...

Terrific and easy 'recipe', Chef John, thanks!

dusty said...

I just found this page and have fallen in love with this recipe. tHe only problem is that here in Alabama artichokes are $4.00 each for one less than 1/2 that size. Deep sigh of regret. Guess I'll wait till next year...

Chef John said...

NO! do not deny yourself... buy 4 and enjoy yourself. Life's too short!

Ed said...

John --
thanks for the video... its really helpful to see how to cut and spread an artichoke. We're just on the tail end of the season here in Oz, but I'll have to give this a try!

SheDrummer said...

I have longing to try this one but my local grocery store has terrible looking artichokes. Is it hard to find a nice looking choke?

Chef John said...

Not in California! ;)

Ask the grocery when they are in season

Anonymous said...

what temperature???

Chef John said...

the video says "preheat to 425F" Did you really need 3 question marks???

James said...

I know that it's been over a year since the last post, but I'd read that aluminum discolors artichokes. I guess that's wrong. Is this a foodie myth?

Chef John said...

i believe its the art that discolored older alum pots

Chefmd said...

I made this today and loved it. Sooo much easier than other artichoke recipes, and much more delicious. Thank you!

eric3000 said...

Just made artichokes this way last night and will never make them any other way! I wanted artichokes that were flavorful enough not to need an additional dip and I was amazed at how the flavors completely infused the entire thing. My guests were very impressed. Thanks!

Sheri said...

Artichokes prepared this way were great. My 7 year old, who doesn't even like veges, devoured the artichoke with a butter dip. I will definately make them again. Thanks for the recipe!

Jen said...

I love this recipe! I stumbled across it a year ago and now it's the only way I make them.

My added tip: wedge 3 or 4 large cloves of garlic in each, then pull them out after roasting. Mash the cloves with a little melted butter and you have an amazing roasted garlic dip.

GPLongwood said...

I'm making these tonight! They look awesome. My wife and I often order the grilled artichokes at Houston's. Is there any chance you will have a recipe and/or video in the future perhaps grilling them?

caroladawn said...

HI
While shopping we found two nice chokes so I am going to try this tonight (its my first time eating one as well as cooking one)

What would you suggest to go with it at a meat?

Chef John said...

Goes with everything, but roast chicken is a classic. enjoy!

Jane said...

I just bought 2 gigantic artichokes, (2/$3.00) and popped these babies in the oven, according to Chef John's expert instructions. The aroma while roasting is almost intoxicating and so delicious. We really did, enjoy these. Thanks, Chef John.

Give Nigella a little cuddle from me.

Off The Walls said...

Looks great! I'm eager to try it.

P.Elaine Banks said...

Wow ! Just came across this , immediately ran out and bought my Artichokes , baked them , loved them ! Will never ever steam another Artichoke. So easy, So Thank You.....

Geetika Joglekar said...

Firstly, I must thank you from the bottom of my heart for posting your recipes. I am a huge fan. I had never cooked anything other than my staple diet (Indian) and I was actually appalled by the idea of cooking without many spices. But thanks to you, I have started trying out a lot of new and different recipes and I am loving other cuisines.
I tried artichokes for the first time ever after watching this video. It was lip-smackingly-delicious (a term my husband used!). I mashed the roasted garlic clove with olive oil and mayonnaise to make a simple dip. And I will be buying artichokes every time I shop my groceries. Thanks again.
P.S. Your how NOT to roast artichoke video was awesome! ;)