Fire-Roasted Artichokes

When artichokes are in season, it is fun to grill up some chicken, and roast some artichokes on the side. Fire roasted artichokes are a great side dish for a healthy meal.

Fire Roasted Artichokes
2 artichokes
1/3 cup vegetable oil (olive is good)
½ cup vinegar
1 tsp. salt
1 tsp. freshly ground pepper
Wash the artichokes. Using kitchen shears or a sharp knife, trim the sharp spines from the top of all the outer leaves. Trim about 2 cm off the entire top to get most of the spines off. Trimming is optional, but makes it easier to eat the artichokes. Steam the artichokes for about 45 minutes. When they are done, heat up the outdoor grill. 

Cut each artichoke in half vertically and use a spoon to scoop out the hairy choke in the center of each half, leaving the tender inner leaves in place. In a one-cup measure, stir together the oil, vinegar, salt, and pepper.
Select a bowl large enough to hold one entire artichoke. Hold one artichoke half with the leaves pointing up over the bowl. Stir the oil mixture and pour the entire marinade over the artichoke, trying to get the marinade to go down between the leaves. Turn the artichoke over to drain a bit. Dip the cut surface into the marinade making sure the entire cut surface is coated with oil, and place the artichoke half onto a plate. Pour the marinade back into the measuring cup. (It is useful to have a helper with clean hands do this for you.) Repeat pouring the marinade over the remaining halves of the artichokes. 

When all four are coated, cook them face down on the grill for about 4 minutes. Using tongs, lift the artichokes and turn them about 90 degrees and cook them for a few more minutes. Turn them over to the round side and cook for a couple minutes. Serve immediately. These go well with an optional nice ranch or garlic dip. If you want more flavor, use italian dressing in place of the simple marinade.

Melinda's Note: You can probably cook the artichokes any way you want before the grilling stage. I personally like steaming them to cook them. I also like the plain salt-and-pepper marinade better than Italian dressing as a marinade. The first time I made these, it was a bit tricky and took a while. After a couple of times, it doesn't take much time.


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