Artichoke Patties


Artichoke patties are an excellent alternative to meat patties, which will surely be appreciated even by the non vegetarian.  

For 30 patties

  • 3 big artichokes
  • 350 gr ricotta cheese
  • 100 gr parmesan, grated
  • 2 garlic cloves
  • extravirgin olive oil
  • 1 cup vegetable stock
  • 1 tbsp parsley, chopped
  • 1 tbsp fresh mint leaves, chopped
  • 40 gr bread crumbs
  • zest of 1 organic lemon + the juice for cleaning the artichokes
  • 40 gr shelled walnuts, coarsely crushed
  • 1/4 tsp nutmeg

for the sauce:

  • 250 ml Kefir
  • the smallest pinch of saffron

Clean and finely slice the artichokes. (see

Place the oil and garlic (cloves halved) in a large pan and gently fry until golden, then remove from the pan and add the artichokes. Sautée for 2-3 minutes and pour in the hot vegetable stock. Cover with a lid and let cook over low heat for 10 minutes, until the stock has evaporated and the artichokes are very tender.

Place the artichokes on a board and chop using a knife.

In a bowl pop in the artichokes, ricotta cheese, parmesan, nutmeg, parsley, mint, lemon zest and walnuts. Mix well and if the mixture becomes too soft add the bread crumbs. Season with salt and pepper to taste.

Make the patties using your hands, roll into the bread crumbs and place on a baking tray covered with parchment paper. Spray with some oil and bake in the oven, still, at 200°C for 20/25 minutes, until golden and cooked through. If you prefer, you can fry the patties in hot oil.

Serve with some good Kefir seasoned with salt and the smallest bit of saffron.

Tempeh with Artichokes

Tempeh is the result of a process of fermentation of yellow soya beans. Very important in the vegan cuisine, tempeh is a healthy and proteic food which can well substitute meat, specially when served together with sauces, vegetables and dips. In this case, I am suggesting a recipe which mimics more than vaguely a classic Italian dish, stew with artichokes.

Serves 4

  • 300 gr tempeh
  • 2 large artichokes
  • 1 white onion, thinly sliced
  • 3 tbsp extravirgin olive oil
  • 1 lemon
  • 2 tbsp soya sauce
  • 1 tbsp parsley, chopped
  • 1/2 tsp chilli powder

Clean and trim the artichokes (if you are wondering how, look at this good video tutorial, halve and reduce to thin slices, in the meantime keeping them in cold water acidulated with the lemon juice so that they don’t turn black.

Let the onion simmer with 2 tbsp extravirgin olive oil and a little water until white but tender, add the artichokes, cover the pan and cook for 10 minutes, then remove the lid and brown off.

Add the parsley and salt to taste. Cube the tempeh and marinate with the soya sauce and chilli powder for 10 minutes.

Sautée the  tempeh in a clean pan with 1 tbsp extravirgin olive oil,  mix with the artichokes and serve hot.


Ottolenghi Style Artichoke Gratin


This recipe is inspired from an Ottolenghi recipe book. I have adapted the recipe to my liking, as instead of boiling artichokes, I prefer to sauté them. By frying them with the onion directly, they acquire more flavour and aroma, as well as preserving a good consistency. I reduced the quantity of lemon zest as well in order to maintain the peculiar flavour of the artichoke. 

Serves 8

  • 6 big globe artichokes
  • Zest of 2 large lemons, grated
  • 2 medium onion
  • 6 tbsp extravirgin olive oil
  • 200 gr ricotta cheese
  • 3 tbsp chopped parseley
  • 3 tbsp chopped fresh mixed herbes (thyme, oregano, marjoran)
  • 50 gr Parmesan cheese, grated
  • 75 gr butter
  • 75 gr plain flour
  • 600 ml fresh milk
  • 1 cup vegetable broth or hot water

Finely chop the onion and clean the artichokes: peel off the outer leaves, which are the hardest, cut off 1 cm at the top, refine the stems and halve them. If the artichoke hearts have some hairs in them, pull them off using a sharp knife. Now quarter the halves and place in cold water with lemon juice, so that they don’t brown.

In a large saucepan stir the onion and oil, cook slowly until soft, and toss in the artichokes. Leave them to cook on a low heat until very soft, adding in vegetable broth as needed (it may be that you won’t need a whole  cup of vegetable broth, as artichokes quality may vary; by the end your artichokes should be tender and dry). Season with salt and pepper to taste and set aside.

Finely chop the lemon zest and herbs and add to the artichokes.


For the béchamel: melt butter, stir in flour and cook for 1 minute. Turn down the heat and slowly pour in the milk, while accurately whisking. Cook, stirring constantly, until thick. Remove from heat and season well with salt and pepper. Set aside.

Mix the béchamel with the artichokes and pour in a tin greased with butter or oil.


carciofialgratin-001Now that the artichoke and béchamel mixture is in the tin, carve small holes on the surface with a spoon (or your hands!) and drop a tbsp of ricotta into each hole. Now, scatter the grated parmesan on top and bake at 180° until golden and crispy. Serve immediately and enjoy!