I absolutely love Yottam Ottolenghi’s weekly vegetarian column in the Guardian (see myblogroll for the link). It is the first thing I check on their website every week (despite thefact that I should probably be using it for things more relevant to the study of international law) and this recipe was enough to coax the aforementioned vegetarian meal avoiding friend to try an entire vegetarian meal (of which the caponata was also a part). Itwas made with jarred artichokes, as attempting to source fresh ones, on a Sunday with the prohibitive Danish Sunday shopping laws requires some knowledge of sorcery or bribery,but was still lovely, and a lot less time consuming. We also skipped the lettuce. It’s the perfect mix of sweet, savoury and creamy. It is more of a starter or side dish than a main as a salad kind of affair, so this will serve four.
- 1 large jar of artichoke hearts.
- 200g buffalo mozzarella
- 10g each chopped parsley, mint and basil
- 120ml olive oil
- 1 crushed garlic clove
- 1 lemon
- 35g caster sugar
- For the candied lemon, peel a lemon into thick strips, and then julienne these into 1-2mm pieces.
- Squeeze the juice of the lemon into a pan, add 35g of sugar and enough water to make it up to 100mls
- .Add the lemon peel slices.
- Simmer for 12-15 minutes, or until reduced by two thirds or so.
- Leave aside.
- Chop the artichokes into quarters.
- Assemble on a plate along with the mozzarella, torn into rough chunks.
- Mix the herbs,oil and garlic together and season.
- Pour the oil mix over the artichokes and mozzarella.
- Top with the candied lemon and syrup (as you are not cooking the artichokes with lemon, which was also an option in the original recipe, you can use basically all the syrup).