Spicchi di Carciofi in Tegame con la Pancetta

Slow-Cooked Artichoke Wedges with Pancetta

Next to steaming them, this may be the simplest way to do artichokes. There are no herbs, onion, or garlic, only some pancetta—the unsmoked kind—and white wine. To keep cooking time brief, and to expose as much of the vegetable as possible to the wine and pancetta, the artichoke is cut into bite-size wedges.

Ingredients

  • 4 large or 6 medium artichokes
  • Freshly squeezed juice of ½ lemon
  • 3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • ¼ pound pancetta, cut into thin strips, about 1 cup
  • Salt
  • Black pepper in a grinder
  • ½ cup dry white wine

Method

  1. Trim the artichokes of the tough outer leaves and tops as described. Cut them into wedges about 1 inch broad at their thickest point. Place them in a bowl with cold water and the lemon juice.
  2. Put the oil and pancetta in a sauté pan and turn on the heat to medium high.
  3. Drain the artichokes and pat them thoroughly dry with a kitchen towel.
  4. When the pancetta is well browned—but not crackling crisp—add the artichokes, salt, and several grindings of pepper. Stir, turning the artichokes over 2 or 3 times, then add the wine. When the wine has bubbled for about 1 minute, turn down the heat to medium and cover the pan. Cook until the artichokes are tender when pricked with a fork, about 30 minutes, depending on the freshness and youth of the vegetable. When the artichokes are done, if there are watery juices in the pan, uncover, turn up the heat, and evaporate the excess liquid.

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