I’ve not posted in a while! I’m sorry! Some of you have been in contact asking me if everything is o.k? Thank you for your genuine concern and kind words. I really appreciate it!
I’ve been really busy mainly with FBC 2010, entertaining my sisters who made an awfully quick pit stop on their way back from Lebanon to Hawaii, helping my cousin move in to her new place and well if I’m to be frank: my spirit is in fact hanging low at the moment!
I’m not normally comfortable divulging feelings like these especially on here. I’m reserved when it comes to matters of the heart and mostly I don’t want to bore you or pass on any negative energy. I want this space to be a happy space filled with good food and dear friends.
With all that said I assure you It’s nothing serious at all. Deep down I’m just a sensitive soul. It’s not the first time I’ve been here and it definitely will not be the last time. What I really need to do is remember to surround myself with genuine and positive people, keep the faith, allow myself to take time off guilt-free, learn to appreciate the simpler things in life more and practice patience since the journey is in fact just as important as the final destination.
Take this artichoke appetizer as an example; It only requires very simple ingredients yet it’s a treasure to eat. Literally. The more you nibble away at the petals, the shorter the journey and the closer you get to the hidden treasure; the artichoke heart. With every bite you get a teaser, a teensy taste of the final reward. You could rip away all the petals and go straight for the heart but you’d loose out on all the little pleasures and experiences that are just as much a part of the artichoke heart too. They also add to the fun and meaning of it all. Just like in life.
So I will savor every little bite whether sweet or sour and appreciate every experience whether big or small, good or bad.
Globe artichoke season has arrived. It peeks from early March to end of May but artichokes are still widely available year around. It’s best to choose a globe artichoke that has tight, deep green leaves and that it feel relatively heavy for it’s size. Avoid any globes that have any cracked leaves. The following recipe is based on the globe artichoke appetizer served around Lebanon as part of the mezza. Some people like to trim the petals as they think it to be more aesthetically pleasing. It is not for the purpose of getting rid of the tiny thorns as they loose their spikiness once cooked
For those of you that have not yet heard, FBC 2010 registration is now open. I’m beyond excited about Food Blogger Connect in June. The conference is set in beautiful Kensington in fresh and fun venues like the Roof Gardens and the sleek Hempel Hotel. We have an outstanding list of topics and a brilliant line up of award-winning speakers including Bea of La Tartine Gourmande, Jeanne Horak from Cook Sister! and Mowie of Mowielicious.com. I’m really looking forward to the talks especially as this year we have gone for workshops and roundtables. You’ll be most thrilled to know that for example in the photography sessions you will get to see your favorite food photographers show you “live” how they go about taking a photo, their thought process, there food styling tips and tricks and much more! We have an awesome wine tasting set up for Friday night that’s going to be filled with surprises with a fabulous goodie bag to boot and whatever you do, you don’t want to miss out on the awards and prizes that will be announced on Sunday! For more information visit the FBC website. Please note that space is limited and we only have 70 seats left thus far.
- 1 globe artichokes
- 45ml or about ¼cup juice of lemon (more or less to taste)
- 30ml or 2 tablespoons of olive oil (more or less to taste)
- 1 small garlic clove- minced
- 1 bay leaf
- Turn the globe upside down and tap it so that you can release any insects, worms and other dirt. rinse in and out under cold water.
- Prep the globe according to likes: You could leave the petals untouched or trim off the thorny bit with a scissor. It’s also good to remove the really small “loose” looking leaves around the bottom. Regarding the stem, some people like to trim most of it off while others keep it. I like to cut most of it off (with only about 1 inch of it left- if that). This also helps the artichoke stand up tall when plated.
- Fill a large pot almost halfway with water and add the bay leaf
- Add the steaming basket with the artichoke, cover and bring all to a boil
- Once boiled reduce and let it simmer for about 20-45 minutes depending on the size of the artichoke. You will know when your artichoke is ready by checking the outer petals. They will be tender and will come off easily. You can also test the tips by biting on to check for tenderness
- While the artichoke is cooking prep the dressing by mixing the lemon juice, olive oil and finely minced garlic. You may also want to add some finely chopped coriander, parsley, basil or any other herb you fancy. Set aside
- Once your artichokes are ready, serve them warm, centered in a plate and drizzled with the dressing.
- Pull a petal off the artichoke and bite onto the fleshy bit at the thicker end of the petal, in a dragging motion so you get all the flesh. Discard the petal. Always best to place a separate bowl to discard the petals in.
- Keep doing this till you get to the artichoke heart or when there are no petals anymore. You will see an inedible fuzzy bit, using a spoon remove it and discard it. You’re left with the prize. Cut it into pieces dip into the dressing and enjoy!