FROM THE KITCHEN OF: Isabel Canfield
TOTAL TIME: 20 min to prep, 10 min to fry
MAKES: 3-4 servings
I had a nice lunch date with my sisters a few weeks ago at The Mill on MacArthur in Northside. It’s one of my favorite restaurants in our side of town. I’ve been there several times and haven’t been disappointed yet. One of my sisters ordered their artichoke po’ boy and, of course, I had a bite. I immediately fell head-over-heels in love with the concept of breaded artichoke hearts. I’ve never even seen it on television or in any of my cookbooks. The breading was golden brown and super crispy. The artichoke heart was tender and had a hint of the tangy brine it was soaked in. I decide to try to recreate these at home and serve them as an appetizer with a very simple lemon and mayo sauce. There’s really nothing to it.
1 can artichoke hearts, drained
1/2 cup flour
1 1/2 cups panko
2 eggs, scrambled
1/2 cup mayo
1/2 lemon, squeezed
salt + pepper
vegetable oil for frying
1. Prepare the dipping sauce. In a small bowl, combine mayo, lemon juice, salt and pepper. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate until ready to use.
2. Prep artichoke hearts. Remove the liquid from the can by pouring the artichoke hearts in a colander. After most of the liquid has been drained, transfer the hearts on a plate lined with 2 paper towels. Just be careful when handling the artichoke hearts. You don’t want to break them apart. Pat them dry and allow them to continue to air dry for 15 minutes or so.
3. Coat the artichoke hearts. First, heat a large cooking pot on medium high heat with vegetable oil about 1-inch deep. While the oil is heating, coat the artichoke hearts. Gather three small bowls. Add flour to the first, 2 eggs scrambled with salt and pepper to the second and panko bread to the third. Take an artichoke heart and lightly coat it in the flour, dip it in the egg and then cover with the panko bread. Repeat this process for all the artichoke hearts and set aside.
4. Fry the artichoke hearts. When the temperature of the oil is hot enough, carefully drop about 7-8 artichokes at a time. They should sizzle and turn golden brown almost immediately. Each side probably takes 30-45 seconds so keep an eye on them. Remove the fried hearts from oil and place on a paper-lined plate. Season the hearts immediately with salt and pepper. Serve with the lemon and mayo sauce.
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