Tag Archives: artichokes

Greek Vegetable Pizza

Like having a Mediterranean garden on a little island of dough.

We can’t eat meat all the time, no matter how much we wish it was possible. For those times when the circles of meatlessness and pizza overlap on your Venn diagram of hunger (how’s that for an intelligent reference) try our vegetable version. With classic Greek flavors this easy crowd pleaser is also great for using up leftover veggies (zucchini, peppers, extra greens, scallions, we could go on…) with minimal effort and maximum results.

Equipment Needed: Baking Sheet or Pizza Pan or Pizza Stone, Chef’s Knife, Cutting Board, Tongs, Mixing Bowl, Plastic Wrap, Serving Spoon

Serving Suggestion: Family Style

Servings: 4 people (or 2 Brown Brothers)

Suggested Wine Pairing: Pinot Grigio, Sauvignon Blanc, Pinot Noir, Beaujolais

Suggested Beer Pairing: Pilsners, Light Lagers  

Ingredients:

  • 1 pre-made ball of pizza dough (about $1.99/package)
  • 1 medium red pepper ($3.99/lb)
  • 1 small onion ($0.99/lb)
  • 1 C pitted olives ($5.99/lb)
  • 1/2 C sundried tomatoes (about $5/3 oz jar)
  • 6 oz feta cheese ($7.99/lb)
  • 1/2 C  our roasted garlic and artichoke cream (you can just mince artichokes with olive oil or buy a spread if you prefer)(about $6/8 0z jar)
  • 1 TSP dried oregano ($3.50/1 oz jar)
  • Salt
  • Pepper
Preparation:
  • Preheat your oven to 425°F.
  • Before anything else, wash off your red pepper and put it directly over the burner on your stove. If you don’t have a gas stove, pop into the oven directly on the baking rack for about 10-15 minutes. You want the skin to start burning and blistering so keep a close eye on it and rotate when one side gets too done; a crackling, popping noise means you’re headed in the right direction.

Let the pepper char up completely on each side before you turn it.

  • When your pepper is properly charred, put it in a bowl and cover with plastic wrap to sweat it out. While you’re waiting for it to steam peel and slice your onion crosswise into thin strips and do the same with your sundried tomatoes (the cutting into strips part, not the peeling part).
  • After about 5 minutes remove the pepper from the bowl, run it under hot water and rub the skin off. Cut in half lengthwise, remove the ribs and seeds and slice into thin strips lengthwise.
  • Peel your onion and slice it into thin discs, halfwise.
  • Throw a little flour on your baking sheet and spread out the pizza dough into the shape your heart desires. Drizzle some olive oil over the top and pop it into the oven for 5 minutes to let it firm up a bit.
  • Take the dough out and coat it with your artichoke spread. Layer on the red pepper strips, onion discs, sundried tomatoes and olives.

Crush the olives before you put them on so they cook down better and cover more pizza real estate.

  • Crumble some feta over the whole lot and sprinkle some dried oregano evenly over the top. Pop it back in the oven for another 10 minute, or until the crust is crisped to your liking. Pull it out, slice it up and take it down.

You could buy the pre-crumbled stuff but where's the fun in that?

Roasted Garlic and Artichoke Cream

You'll be finding excuses to put this on everything.

We’re not gonna lie, we totally ripped this idea off from a spread we saw while shopping in Fairway. Our version, however, isn’t $14 for 8 ounces, so there. This blend is great by itself on bread but can be used for pizzas, on pasta, as a sauce for poultry, you name it. For a sharper bite use the garlic raw instead of roasting it.

Equipment Needed: Aluminum Foil, Baking Pan, Chef’s Knife, Cutting Board, Blender or Food Processor

Serving Suggestion: Family Style

Servings: 8-12

Suggested Wine Pairing: Pinot Gris, Sauvignon Blanc, un-oaked Chardonnay

Suggested Beer Pairing: Pilsner, Light Lagers

Ingredients:

  • 2 cans artichoke hearts ($2.79/13.75 oz can)
  • 2 garlic bulbs (yes, 2 whole bulbs) ($2.99/lb)
  • 1/4 C grated Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese ($12.99/lb)
  • 1 lemon ($0.50/each)
  • 4 TBSP extra virgin olive oil, divided ($9.99)/32 oz)
  • Salt
  • Black Pepper

Preparation:

  • Preheat your oven to 415° F.
  • Peel as much of the loose outer papery skin odd the garlic bulbs as you can without actually peeling them. Cut the tops off of the cloves and tear off a piece of foil large enough to enclose both bulbs.
  • Place the foil in the baking sheet and set down your garlic bulbs, cut side up. Drizzle about two tablespoons of olive oil over the top and sprinkle some salt and pepper on each as well. Wrap them up and pop them in the oven for 35 minutes.

Lube your bulbs.

  • While your garlic is roasting drain the artichokes and quarter them. Put them in the blender or food processor, add a palmful of salt and pepper, and grate in a quarter cup of Parmigiano cheese. Squeeze in the juice of half a lime, pour in two tablespoons of extra virgin olive oil and blend everything together until it’s smooth.

The acidity of the lemon helps balance things out.

  • When your garlic has roasted let it cool for a couple of minutes and then squeeze the cloves out of their peels and into your artichoke puree. Blend until everything is incorporated and add more cheese, salt, pepper or lemon to taste. Spread on your vessel of choice and buon appetito!

Roasted Asparagus with Artichokes and Poached Egg

Like a little protein king on top of a roasted castle.

A poached egg on top of delicious vegetables you say? How novel! There’s no possible way that anyone has thought of this before. Wait, what? This is almost as played out as beet and goat cheese salad? Well guess what Mr. Fancypants, some combinations are awesome and are not to be f**ked with. So there. Grab yourself some fresh asparagus and artichokes (sorry, this is one time the canned ones won’t work) and get in there.

Equipment Needed: Baking Sheet, 3 QT Pot, Chef’s Knife, Cutting Board, Vegetable Peeler, Microplane, Spider or Slotted Spoon

Serving Suggestion: Family Style

Servings: 4

Suggested Wine Pairing: Sauvignon Blanc,  Pinot Grigio, Cava, Prosecco

Suggested Beer Pairing: Crisp Lagers, Pilsner, Witbier or Heffeweizen  

Ingredients:

  • 1 lb asparagus ($3.99/lb)
  • 4 large artichokes ($2.50/each)
  • 1 egg ($2.79/dozen)
  • 1/4 C Parmigiano Reggianno cheese (about $13.99/lb)
  • 3 cloves garlic ($2.99/lb)
  • 1 lemon ($0.50/each)
  • 2 TBSP white vinegar ($1.99/32 oz)
  •  3 TBSP extra virgin olive oil, divided ($8.99/32 oz)
  • Salt
  • Pepper

Preparation:

  • Preheat your oven to 400° F
  • Thoroughly rinse your asparagus and snap off the woody ends. Place them on the baking sheet to await their companions.

The stalk will naturally snap at the woody part.

  • Cut the top half of the artichokes off.  Remove the hard leaves from the outside until you get down to the softer ones towards the center. With your vegetable peeler take the top layer of skin off the stem. Cut the artichokes in half and add to the baking sheet.

We sure to remove any hard leaves and the outer skin on the stalk.

  • Mince the garlic and sprinkle it evenly across your veggies. Drizzle the whole lot with olive oil, salt and pepper. Pop it all in the oven and roast for about 15 minutes or until things start to develop the delicious brown crust we all know and love.
  • With about 5 minutes left on your green guys fill your pot about 3/4 full with water and bring to a boil. Reduce to a simmer and add a couple capfuls of white vinegar. Crack your egg into the pot and cook for 2 minutes. Remove it from the water when it’s done and make sure to let the excess water drip off.

Slide the egg in gently.

  • Plate up your veggies and squeeze the juice of half a lemon over everything. Gently place the egg on top and grate on your cheese. Break the egg open when you’re ready to serve and marvel at your new favorite flavor combo.

Grate, grate, grate all day long. Grate, grate, grate while we sing this song.

Rustic Italian Flatbread

All of your basic food groups on one delicious slice.

Not sure if you noticed lately but it’s pretty f**king hot out. This meteorological fact combined with our recent penchant for pre-made pizza dough has forced us to make quick and easy dinners. Take your taste buds to the Italian countryside (as we imagine it) with this no-brainer “flatbread”. To keep things simple we opted for artichoke spread as the sauce and some fresh mixed greens from our CSA to make us feel better about eating half a pizza each.

Equipment Needed: Baking Sheet or Pizza Pan or Pizza Stone, Chef’s Knife, Cutting Board, Serving Spoon

Serving Suggestion: Family Style

Servings: We can take down a flatbread each (half a pizza for you lay people), but this could serve up to 4 normal people.

Suggested Wine Pairing: Chianti, Montepulciano D’Abruzzo, Old Vine Zinfandel

Suggested Beer Pairing: Pilsner, Lager, Lighter Ales  

Ingredients:

  • 1 pre-made ball of pizza dough (we used a garlic herb dough that suited us just fine)(about $1.99/package)
  • 1/3 lb thinly sliced speck (you could also use prosciutto or any other cured meat you prefer)(about $16.99/lb)
  • 4-6 oz Parmigiano Reggiano cheese (about $13.99/lb)
  • 2 C spring lettuce mix ($3.89/5 oz package)
  • 1/4 C flour ($1.89/2 lb)
  • 1/4 – 1/2 C artichoke spread (you can just mince artichokes with olive oil if you can’t find this)(about $6/8 0z jar)
  • 2 TBSP balsamic vinegar (about $6/17 oz bottle)
  • Salt
  • Pepper
Preparation:
  • Preheat your oven to 425°F.
  • Lay your speck out on the cutting board and slice it crosswise into 1/2 inch strips.

Slice the speck into thin strips for easier eating.

  • On your baking sheet toss some flour down and spread out the pizza dough out until it’s about 1/4 inch thick (roughly as thick as a book of matches).

Cut the dough in half or quarters if you want to do mini personal pizzas.

  • Cut the dough in half and reshape in any way you prefer (we prefer ovals).
  • Spread your artichoke dip evenly across the top of each piece and then layer the pieces of speck on top of that.
  • Top everything off with as much Parmigiano Reggiano as your little heart desires and pop it in the oven for 10-15 minutes, or until the crust is crispy.

We prefer a heavy hand with the cheese but you already knew that.

  • When the pizza is done, spread about a cup of greens across the top of each. Drizzle olive oil and balsamic vinegar over all of it. Cut into manageable pieces and serve.

There's no need for a side salad if you've got lettuce on your pizza.

Baked Spinach and Artichoke Dip

A classic dip with a hearty twist that makes it even easier to serve.

You know the drill. You’ve been invited to a party/you’re having guests over/you need a quick snack for Sunday’s game and you don’t have the time or patience to be fancy. Well worry no longer because if you can cut and stir you can make this classic people pleaser. The bread bowl provides both the serving and the dipping apparatus making this one a definite fire and forget. Go ahead and take the credit when the crowd goes wild but remember, you owe us a beer for this one.

Equipment Needed: Baking Sheet, Mixing Bowl, Strainer or Colander, Chef’s Knife, Cutting Board, Wooden Spoon, Bread Knife (optional)

Serving Suggestion: Family Style

Servings: 12-ish

Suggested Wine Pairing: Whatever you’re drinking

Suggested Beer Pairing: Whatever you’re drinking

Ingredients:

  • Round loaf of bread (we used a marble rye) (about $3)
  • 1 C grated Parmigiano Reggiano cheese (do yourself a huge favor and buy the pre-shredded stuff for this one)($12/lb)
  • 1/2 C mayonnaise ($3.99/15 oz jar)
  • 1/2 C sour cream ($1.49/16 oz)
  • 1 can artichoke hearts ($2.79/13.75 oz can)
  • 1 package frozen spinach ($1.79/10 oz box)
  • 1-2 TSP garlic powder ($2/2.5 oz jar)
  • 1-2 TSP onion powder ($2/2.5 oz jar)
  • 1 TSP crushed red pepper ($3.50/2.5 oz jar)
  • Salt
  • Pepper

Preparation:

  • Preheat your oven to 350°F. Remove the frozen spinach from the box and place it in your strainer or colander in the sink.
  • Take your bread and cut a ring in the top about 1/2 an inch from the edges and about 2 inches deep (try to stay 1/2 an inch away from the bottom of the loaf). This will become your dipping pieces. Angle the knife in to cut the bottom of the chunk you’ve just created and pull it out. Take this big piece, cut it into 1 inch cubes and set them aside.

Be careful not to cut the sides too thin or cut through the bottom of the loaf.

  • At this point you can continue to let the spinach thaw naturally or if you’re feeling really impatient run it under hot water. Once  it’s thawed press it into the straining implement and squeeze out as much liquid as possible. You should end up with a green lump about a third of what you started with; toss it in your mixing bowl.

Seriously, the spinach should be almost dry when you finish or you're at risk for a watery dip.

  • Drain your artichoke hearts. Quarter them, then cut each quarter into three pieces (you want to make sure everything is bite-sized and can mix easily). Throw these in the mixing bowl with the spinach.

Be sure to remove any leaves that don't cut easily. If they're hard to cut they're hard to chew.

  • Add the mayo, sour cream and cheese. Give everything a good stir to make sure the veggies have mixed well then pour in 1 teaspoon of onion powder, garlic powder, crushed red pepper and a tiny pinch of salt and pepper (not too much, there’s plenty of saltiness from the cheese and spice from the red pepper). Stir thoroughly and add more seasoning to taste.
  • While you can make the mix a day in advance you want it to be room temperature for this next part so it melts easily. Spoon it into the bread bowl you created, place the loaf on your baking pan and put it in the oven for 10-12 minutes until the dip is warmed throughout. Serve on a plate with the bread cubes and encourage people to go to town on the vessel once the cut pieces are gone.

Italian Chicken Sub

 

Piccata to go.

 

Remember that Chicken Piccata you made that was so awesome? Wouldn’t it be great to make it portable? Stop your wishing right there and just add bread.

Equipment Needed: Cutting Board, Bread Knife or Chef’s Knife

Serving Suggestion: Individual

Servings: 1

Ingredients:

  • Leftover chicken picatta
  • Leftover arugula
  • Leftover artichoke hearts
  • Parmagiano reggiano cheese
  • Hot sauce, pesto or mayo
  • Italian bread

Preparation:

  • Cut yourself off a decent piece of Italian bread (4-6 inches) and slice it lengthwise.
  • Layer some arugula on the bottom, put chicken on top, add some artichokes and grate cheese on the whole heap. Add your dressing of choice and enjoy.
  • Bonus points for toasting it.

Chicken Piccata with Warm Arugula Salad

 

It may not be a fall harvest, but your tongue will reap the rewards.

 

With fall well underway we aren’t quite ready to say goodbye to brighter, lighter dishes just yet. Our variation on this classic Italian dish uses lemon zest in the breading for more flavor and arugula in the salad for a nice, peppery counterpoint. Canned and frozen veggies, while not always ideal, reduce the time it takes to get from the stove to your mouth. We figured you’d be ok with that.

Equipment Needed: Frying Pan, 3 Plates, Spatula, Chef’s Knife, Cutting Board, Bowl, Colander, Fork, Microplane, Paper Towels

Serving Suggestion: Individual Plating

Servings: 4

Suggested Wine Pairing: Chardonnay, Viognier, Sauvignon Blanc, Pinot Grigio

Suggested Beer Pairing: Pilsner, Lager, Lighter Ales

Ingredients:

  • 4 boneless skinless chicken breasts ($5.99/lb)
  • 3 eggs ($2.50/dozen)
  • 3 lemons ($0.50/each)
  • 2 cloves garlic ($2.99/lb)
  • 4-6 C flour, divided ($1.89/2 lb bag)
  • 10 oz frozen peas ($1/package)
  • 1 can artichoke hearts ($3/13.75 oz)
  • 1/4lb  arugula ($3.89/5 oz)
  • 2 TBSP white vinegar ($1.99/32 oz)
  • Capers ($2/3 oz jar)
  • Extra virgin olive oil ($9.99/34 oz bottle)
  • Salt
  • Pepper

Preparation:

  • Wash and drain the arugula. Drain the can of artichoke hearts and cut them into quarters. Mince your garlic and set these three ingredients aside.
  • Wash and trim the chicken breasts and cut each one in half horizontally (like you were trying to butterfly them and went too far). If you really wanna put the effort in you can take a meat tenderizer and pound them thin, but this is quicker, easier and less messy.
  • Crack your eggs into a bowl, add a splash of water and whisk thoroughly. Put equal amounts of flour on two plates and arrange them flour plate, egg bowl, flour plate.
  • In the second flour plate add about two tablespoons of pepper and, using your microplane, grate in the skin of two lemons (congrats, you’ve just zested something). Make sure you stop when you start to see white, otherwise things will get bitter. Stir the flour, pepper and lemon zest together so all three are evenly incorporated.

 

Be careful to avoid the pith (white part) to keep everything citrusy.

 

  • Put the frying pan over medium heat and add about 1/4 inch of olive oil. Before you start dredging and frying take a third plate and put a couple of paper towels on it so you can drain the chicken a bit before serving.
  • Dredge each chicken breast in this order: flour, egg, flour/lemon mix. Once you’ve coated as many pieces as will fit in the pan at once place them in gently to avoid splattering. Fry for about 4 minutes on each side until the flour crust is a golden brown with crispy bits.

 

An initial hit of flour helps everything stick to the chicken better.

 

 

See you on the flipside.

 

  • Once the chicken is cooked place it on the paper towels and immediately sprinkle with salt and squeeze a healthy dose of lemon juice on each piece. Add more olive oil to the pan to keep the level constant and repeat dredging, frying and flavoring until every piece is done. At this point you can either put a cover over the chicken or toss it in the oven at 200°F to keep it warm while you finish the salad.
  • In the same pan re-coat the bottom with olive oil, add the garlic and cook it down for 2 minutes. Toss in the peas, artichoke hearts and vinegar and heat the whole mix until the peas are cooked through (about 5-8 minutes).

 

Vinegar complements the lemon and keeps the veggies in check.

 

  • On each serving plate add a bed of arugula, a couple scoops of the veggie mixture and place the chicken on top. Spoon about a tablespoon of capers over everything for a nice briny counterpoint.