Artichoke Hors D’oeuvre

Artichauts en Hors d’Oeuvre

Preparation info

  • Difficulty


  • Servings:


Appears in

Simple French Food

By Richard Olney

Published 1974

  • About

Best served tepid or cool, neither hot nor chilled. Precise proportions are of little importance—count about twice as much white wine as olive oil and as much water as necessary to just cover; the choice and quantity of herbs may be varied, more or less garlic may be added; sliced or chopped onion may also be added . . . If, after cooking, the liquid seems overabundant, it may be rapidly reduced apart. These artichokes are eaten like boiled artichokes, their cooking liquid replacing the vinaigrette, and side dishes should be furnished to collect the debris. Finger bowls are useful.


  • 6 medium artichokes
  • ½ cup chopped parsley (freshly picked Italian, if possible)
  • 1 teaspoon mixed herbs (thyme, savory, oregano)
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 10 to 12 unpeeled cloves garlic
  • ¼ teaspoon fennel seeds
  • Salt, pinch cayenne
  • cup olive oil
  • cups dry white wine
  • cup tomato purée (not tomato paste)
  • 1 cup (more or less) water—to barely cover


Break off the stems, pull off those tough outer leaves that are not attached to a tender base of flesh, cut off the top third or half of the artichoke (depending on the variety, the form, and the tenderness), and pare off the dark green parts from the bottom. Arrange them tightly, bottoms down, in a vessel just large enough to contain them, fill the interstices with the dry materials, and pour over the liquids in the order in which they are listed. Bring to a light boil and cook, covered, for from 25 minutes to 30 minutes—or more, depending on the tenderness of the artichokes. They are done when the bottoms resist but slightly the thrust of a trussing needle or a sharply pointed knife (the acidity of the wine and the tomato slows down the cooking process so time may not be judged in the same way as for boiled artichokes).