The cooking liquid lends a flavor reminiscent of a classic preparation of marinated artichokes done in Greece.
Make Ahead: The artichokes can be cooked, cooled, covered and refrigerated a few days in advance. They do not have to be stored in the cooled cooking liquid, but they can be.
- For the artichokes
- 8 cups water
- 1 cup white wine vinegar
- 1 cup olive oil
- 8 sprigs thyme
- 2 medium cloves garlic, smashed
- 2 medium lemons
- 25 to 30 baby artichokes
- 3 tablespoons kosher salt
- For the salad
- 2 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice
- 6 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
- 1 large red onion, cut into quarters and then into very thin slices (see NOTE)
- 14 to 16 ounces baby arugula
- Fronds from 6 to 8 stems of dill, chopped (4 tablespoons)
- Sea salt
- Freshly ground black pepper
For the artichokes: Cut a round of parchment paper that will fit inside the large saucepan you will use.
Combine the water, vinegar, oil, thyme, garlic and kosher salt in a large saucepan over medium heat.
Meanwhile, fill a large bowl with cool water and squeeze the juice from the lemons into it.
Peel off and discard the outer leaves of the artichokes until you reach the yellow leaves. Cut off and discard the artichoke tops (about 1 inch) and trim the stem ends. Cut the remaining artichoke bottoms into quarters, placing them in the acidulated water as you work.
Add the artichokes to the saucepan and fit the parchment paper snugly on top of the cooking liquid. Increase the heat to medium-high and bring just to a boil, then reduce the heat to medium and cook for about 30 minutes, with the liquid barely bubbling, until the artichokes are tender. Let them cool in the liquid, then discard the liquid or use it to store the artichokes if you are making them in advance (see headnote).
For the salad: Whisk together the lemon juice and oil in a small bowl to form an emulsified vinaigrette.
Combine the onion, arugula and cooked, cooled artichoke quarters in a mixing bowl. Add the dill and sea salt and pepper to taste.
Add the vinaigrette to the bowl in increments, pouring it against the sides of the bowl. Toss the salad gently to coat, then transfer to a large serving bowl. Taste; adjust the seasoning or drizzle more vinaigrette, as needed. Serve immediately.
NOTE: To reduce the onion's bite and to intensify its color, chef Mike Isabella likes to toss the onion slices in lemon juice and let them sit for a few minutes before adding them to the salad components.
From Mike Isabella, head chef at Zaytinya in Penn Quarter.
Tested by Mike Isabella and Bonnie S. Benwick.
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