🌱Italian Stuffed Artichokes and a Covid Safe Lemonade Stand🍋

I love artichokes!! So for my birthday this month,

a good friend sent me these beauties from California!! I call them beauties because of the lushness of the green and purple leaves, right down to the core…so beautiful, I had to take a still-life photo of them!!

The following recipe was handed down from my grandmother to my mother and I’m happy to share it with you!!

But first I’ll describe how to prepare the artichokes for stuffing, then I will include the recipe…

Start by soaking them in cold water for about 10 minutes, to clean them. Let them stand upside down to drain for a few minutes, then cut the end of stems, for a clean end. You could cook these whole, but I prefer to cut them in half, so I can feed more people and it won’t be as filling, because a whole one could be a meal!! So start at the stem and cut through to the tip…

Now you have lovely halves!!

Next cut about an inch from the top, these are tough leaves, with not much meat. I also, pull some of the small leaves off the base of the stem, exposing the larger leaves.

This is the trickiest part, cutting the choke out, which are sharp and pointy…simply cut around the bottom of the choke, like the photo, then pull on the purple leaves and the whole choke will come out and form a nice cavity to put in stuffing!!

Now they are ready to steam!! Lay a steaming basket at the bottom of a big pot, fill water to just at basket level, then layer artichokes and cook until an outer leave pulls off easy.

While the artichokes are steaming, make the breadcrumb mixture for stuffing.

The photo on the left are the artichokes after stuffing and before cooking, the photo on right is after cooking…

ITALIAN STUFFED ARTICHOKES RECIPE

Ingredients

  • 6 whole artichokes
  • 2 cups Italian bread crumbs
  • 1½ cup imported romano cheese grated
  • ¼ cup parsley minced
  • 4 cloves garlic minced
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • ¼ cup lemon juice
  • 6 tablespoons olive oil or enough to drizzle in and out of artichoke

Instructions

  • Soak artichokes in cold water for 10 minutes.
  • To prepare the artichokes: Cut end of stems with a sharp knife.
  • Slice off 1 inch straight from the top of each artichoke (the prickly part).
  • Cut out choke, by cutting below prickly part and pull sharp purple leaves out and choke will come out with it.
  • You could rub lemon on cut surfaces to keep it from turning brown, but it will brown when steamed and cooked…so this step could be optional
  • Place the artichokes, cavity side down, in the steamer basket, cover, and steam until they are almost tender, about 35 minutes. (They’ll finish cooking in the oven.) Check for doneness by pulling off an outer leaf — it should come off fairly easily. Set them aside to cool.
  • While the artichokes are steaming, preheat the oven to 375°F.
  • Mix breadcrumbs, romano cheese, garlic, parsley, salt and pepper in a large bowl.
  • Hold artichoke over bowl of breadcrumb mixture, use a spoon and/or your hands to carefully fill all of the spaces between the leaves as much as possible, then lay artichoke down on vegetable sprayed pan, then fill the center of each artichoke with the stuffing — fill it to maximum capacity! (If you think there’s too much stuffing, don’t worry just pack it in.) Carefully drizzle olive oil into filled leaves and cavity. Cover with aluminum foil.
  • Place in the preheated 375°F oven and bake for about 20 to 30 minutes or until breadcrumb mixture looks a little browned.
  • Serve as appetizer, side dish or snack! ENJOY!!!😋

✼Note: For those who do not know how to eat artichokes, hold the top of each leaf in your hand and scrape with teeth from top to bottom, you will get breadcrumbs and meat from the leaf, a wonderful combination. When you get to the soft heart, you can eat the rest of the artichoke and stem too, because you have already removed the choke!! Click here to see a short video on how to eat a stuffed artichoke.

🌿🍋🌿

Here is a fun and character building way to keep your children or grandchildren busy…

A lemonade stand, covid safe too!! So Aaden, Parker and Gina were able to make it to Cape Cod for their annual visit this year!! They have wonderful memories of having a lemonade stand from two years ago, but I was very apprehensive about it this year, with covid raging, especially in busy areas on the Cape. However Gina had a plan…

She took the boys to our local dollar store, and bought all the supplies they needed, with the promise that they would pay her back, from the money they made from their profits!!

They couldn’t wait to get home, to start their advertisement poster board…

No help from grownups, this is what they came up with!!

Here is their merchandise…a donation of popcorn by their Aunt Patty, who lives next door to us💖 All the thirst quenching drinks are sealed and bought from the dollar store, the fruit punch and lemonade were great, not too sweet!!

Our cottage is on the way to the beach, so they had a short wait until customers started coming!!! They remembered to put their masks on when people came up to their stand…

As the police pulled up, we thought, “OH NO!” maybe we did something wrong, but no, they wanted to buy lemonade and had very supportive words for the entrepreneurs!! And then, the ice cream man came along and he bought lemonade too🤗

And of course, the boys bought ice cream with their profits…notice the money in their basket!!! In two days they each made $80 and donated half to St. Jude!! People were so kind, many gave more than they owed. Another happy memory made from Nina and Papa’s cottage!!

🎨🖌🎨

My latest paint by number masterpiece!!

My son VJ gave this to me for Mother’s Day…an online company will make up a paint by number kit, from a photo that you send to them!! It’s a little blotchy, but came out a very good likeness to the photo…it will get a special place in one of our homes♥️

🌿

Our family was very touched by the kindness of so many people coming by and buying lemonade from Aaden and Parker. Along with their words of encouragement and generous spirit, prompting the boys to want to give some of their money to charity!! It reminds me of this quote:

I will keep their kindness in my heart and try to pay it forward whenever I can💚

8 thoughts on “🌱Italian Stuffed Artichokes and a Covid Safe Lemonade Stand🍋

  1. As with all your posts, this is awesome! How wonderful for the grandsons to have a lemonade stand, but to donate some of the proceeds to St. Jude. Kudos ans blessings to them!

    Now, about the stuffed artichokes. . . Art’s mom gave me her recipe fifty years ago, but I never knew to soak them first! I just wash them well, but I assume soaking them helps to soften them too! The amazing part . . . your recipe is basically the same as what I use, though I add eggs to mine to make the stuffing more moist, and I cook them in tomato sauce. They are yummy and the filling expands making one artichoke a meal! I even use this filling in stuffed peppers!

    I’m so happy yall are having agreat summer and being cognizant of the virus too! Praying this pandemic is completely over soon. Stay safe and also praying Heni passes you by. God bless! 💕

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you, Nancy, I appreciate your support👍💓 I just had my birthday, next year is the big 70, not sure what I will do with this blog, maybe visions of my 70s😩

      The boys had a great time doing the lemonade stand, they had many fun adventures with us…we brought them to see the seals at Chatham Fish Pier too, but I think their favorite was the lemonade stand🤗

      Your stuffed artichokes sound amazing, kind of like a huge meatball in the sauce!!
      The breadcrumb mixture is what I put in my meatballs along with eggs and use it in so many other recipes too, like your stuffed peppers!!

      I know, this virus needs to go, never thought it would be around this long!!
      We came down to the Cape this morning to batten down the hatches, the traffic was all going the other way, off cape, we made it in record time😂 So far looks like Henri won’t be too bad!! Thank you again, for your kind comments, stay well🙏🏼💖

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      1. I know you had a birthday, and we both are Leo’s! I hope you had a wonderful one, but don’t give up your blog next year. I turned 71 and don’t know how that happened seeing I just got out of high school! LOL

        We too use that mixture in meatballs. Aren’t we lucky to have married Italians who know how to make great food? Only problem, it goes right to my waist. Art has been making homemade pasta, ravioli, manicotti, and even cannoli. So yummy.

        Take care, stay safe and enjoy those handsome young’uns! See, I’m a true Southerner now! 💖

        Liked by 1 person

      2. I don’t think I’ll give up my blog, but I’ll have to change the name!!
        Me too, I still feel 18 inside, my mother used to say that and it’s so true!!
        Oh, those Italians sure love their food, I learned a lot about cooking from my mother-in-law!! I know what you mean about good food going right to our waistline, it’s a constant battle…we can gain 4 lbs in one day, but it takes a month to lose it!! But you’re still lucky that Art cooks for you😉 Have you ever watched Pasta Grannies? You can watch it on YouTube, it’s awesome, Art will love it!!
        You sound like my sister-in-law, who lives in Texas!!! Take care and be well❤️

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  2. Hi Carol,

    I’m enjoying my time in Florida with my sister. She too loves artichokes, and uses my Gram’s and mom’s recipe. It is very similar to yours, except they are not baked. She is going to try baking them. She also told my cousin Jeannie, who uses the same recipe, about baking the artichokes. She too will try it. Thanks. So glad Gina and the boys were able to spend time at the Cape, and that their lemonade adventure was a success. They must have been thrilled when the police and ice cream truck driver stopped for a cool drink of lemonade. Their kindness is something they will remember. What’s even better was the boy’s kindness, sharing the profits. That was very special, a perfect example of Amelia Earhart’s quote. I know how proud you must be. I kept checking the weather, and saw that Henri, thankfully, was kind to the Cape. So you didn’t have
    to do much cleanup.
    Say hello to Victor, and Patty and Don too. Dee sends warm regard to you and Victor;
    she too misses “little house” and the Cape.
    Take good care, and enjoy the rest of the summer.

    With Love,
    Lucille

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    1. Hi Lucille, So glad you are enjoying Florida, it is probably cooler there than on the Cape!! It has been so hot and humid all over New England, the humidity is so uncomfortable. And we were so glad that Henri wasn’t a problem in our area.
      I hope the artichokes come out good, you can’t go wrong with that stuffing!
      The boys were thrilled about their lemonade stand and people were so kind to them! Gina and Tom are bringing up the boys right, teaching them to give to charities, at a young age. I’m proud of them all for doing that.
      I will say hello to all for you and the same to Dee for us!! We are looking forward to your visit in September, let us know when you’ll be coming!!
      Travel safely and stay well💖

      Like

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