Cooked By TFW: Roasted Artichoke

(Hours after last week's recipe post was published, a gunman – a former student – opened fire at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida. Parkland is about 80 miles south of my hometown. 17 people were killed and many more injured. Students have banded together to push for gun law reform, but – so far – their cries have fallen on deaf ears. We send our condolences to the victims and their loved ones during this difficult time. Personally, I don't quite know what else to say about this… but I'll gladly let Dallas sports broadcaster Dale Hansen speak for me. With that said, let's get to this week's delicious recipe!)

Howdy kids, it's Uncle Tym Tym with yet another delicious recipe; this week, a fun, healthy party appetizer! But first… 

Folks have been asking me how Black Panther was. My spoiler embargo is still up (which it shouldn't… you should've seen the movie by now. All the links in this paragraph have various spoilers in them. YOU'VE BEEN WARNED!) but I will say it's hands down the best Marvel film of all time. There are a handful of opinions about how the movie (specifically the main villain, Erik Killmonger) was problematic, and I definitely understand where folks are coming from… especially how Agent Ross is portrayed as a good guy, even though he – as a CIA agent – specializes in politically destabilizing countries like Wakanda. M'Baku – leader of the Jabari tribe – shows us all how best to handle Colonizers who speak out of turn. (Side note: I'm going as M'Baku for halloween this year. Better get my flabby belly back into shape!) Despite all of Killmonger's issues, his line "Bury me in the ocean with my ancestors who jumped from ships, cuz they knew death was better than bondage" gave me CHILLS in the theater! As I said last week, representation matters! And Black Panther didn't disappoint. T'Challa's super genius, wise-cracking sister, Shuri, stole the show AND is inspiring the kiddos! Director Ryan Coogler made a masterpiece AT ONLY AGE 31!!! His attention to detail is amazing! And lastly… I'll leave you with this gem!

Now before we hop into this week's recipe, I just wanted to give a big happy birthday shout out to my dear friend, Ashley Drumm, who provided us this delicious recipe a few months ago! With that said, this week we're making a fun party appetizer, Roasted Artichoke with a sweet Tahani dipping sauce! Two weeks ago, I made some Tahini on a whim and wanted to do more with it than just avocado sauce for my fish. Back in August when I was looking into Tahini recipes, I found one for a dipping sauce to pair with roasted artichoke. Artichokes are a great source of fiber and illness-fighting antioxidants, and can help lower your cholesterol. So… yeah… we need more artichokes in our lives! I made today's recipe early this morning because Wednesdays are my roommate's day off and I wanted to make her something to eat while we watch The Price Is Right on the couch together… We just devoured the whole thing at 9am!

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Ingredients

  • 1 Artichoke
  • 1 Large Lemon
  • 3-5 Cloves of Garlic
  • 1/4 Cup Tahini
  • 1 Tablespoon Maple Syrup (or honey [but we don't do honey, because we care about bees!] or brown sugar or agave nectar)
  • 1/2 Teaspoon Cumin
  • 1/4 Cup Water
  • Salt

Directions

1. Food Prep. Preheat the oven to 425º. Cut the lemon into 6 wedges and set aside. I've shared before that I worked at [Redacted] Country Club for a bit. I'm kinda proud (as I am about everything that I do) of my lemon wedge skills. Then, cut the stem off the artichoke so that it can stand on its own. Also, chop off about half an inch to an inch from the top of the artichoke.

2. Cookin' Time. I told you 3-5 garlic cloves in the ingredients. Here's the "Choose Your Own Destiny" part of the recipe: You need at least two cloves for the artichoke and one clove for the sauce. I did three in the artichoke and two in the sauce. However many you use for the artichoke, squish those with the flat side of your knife. You're gonna slide the garlic in between the leaves. Using two of your lemon wedges, next rub the artichoke down so that it's covered in the wedges' juices. Give a large square of tin foil a spray of cooking spray and then place your artichoke in the center of the foil with two more wedges on either side. Sprinkle with some salt, wrap it all up and toss in the oven for 90 minutes.

3. Make the Sauce, Boss! While the artichoke is baking, put the tahini, remaining garlic, cumin, and syrup into your food processor. Squeeze the juice of your last two lemon wedges in there too (make sure no seeds fall in). I made the mistake of putting too much water (all 1/4 Cup of it) in and my sauce was a little thin. I'd recommend adding only a little water at first, blending it up and then add more gradually. If you like it thinner, add the whole 1/4 Cup. Toss the sauce in the fridge while you wait for the artichoke to finish. Once the 90 minutes are up, allow it to cook for 5-10 minutes before serving.

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And there you have it! Give it a try at your next big gathering and see how much your friends appreciate you providing more than just chips! Be sure to share your artichokes on all the social medias using the hashtag #CookedByTFW. And – as always – thank me in the morning (or at the party… presuming I get an invite)!

Tym Gooden