Braised artichokes with potatoes and verjuice

Serves 4
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Indy Lifestyle Online

This makes a beautiful light lunch or supper dish served with bread and a mâche salad dressed with walnut oil. Alternatively, it is the perfect accompaniment to roast lamb or roast chicken.

Serves 4

4 large artichokes or 8 small ones
175ml/6fl oz extra-virgin olive oil
10 cloves of garlic, peeled and finely sliced
12 small onions or shallots
12 small waxy potatoes (Roseval perhaps)
3 bay leaves
1 small bunch of thyme
Freshly ground black pepper
Sea salt
3tbsp curly parsley, finely chopped
Tear off the outside leaves of the artichokes until you reach the heart. Cut off the top three-quarters of the artichoke leaves and then, using a teaspoon, scrape out all the spiky, hairy choke. Cut the stem close to the heart. If the artichokes are small, cut them in half; if they are larger, quarter them and quickly drop them into a bowl of acidulated water (cold water with a few drops of vinegar or lemon juice added).

Heat a third of the oil in a pan large enough to hold all the ingredients. Add the artichokes, a good pinch of salt and pepper and allow the artichokes to brown slightly.

Meanwhile peel the little onions or shallots, removing the outside layer, then slice the potatoes in half and lengthwise. Add the potatoes, onions and garlic to the artichokes. Toss quickly and add the bay leaf, thyme and verjuice, then the rest of the olive oil.

Place a lid on the pan, lower the heat and braise gently on the top of the stove for an hour, or until the vegetables are tender and the sauce rich and emulsified.

Check for seasoning, sprinkle over the parsley and serve. In the autumn l often add some wild mushrooms that l have sweated separately in a pan with a good knob of butter and toss through just before serving.

Importers and distributors of Verjuice in the UK

Carr Taylor Wines Ltd, tel: 01424 752 501

MD Wine - fine South African wines, contact: Dorothee Kirchner, tel: 020 8546 2066, or email dkirchner@md-wine.com

Mail order from Kai Kitchen, tel: 0845 157 6654 or 01273 732 981, www.kaikitchen.co.uk

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