Fry the onion gently in half the olive oil, using a flameproof casserole. Add the potatoes and fry all over, then turn down the heat, and continue to cook, partly covered, while you prepare the artichokes. Small ones just need trimming and rinsing before putting in the pan. Larger ones should be trimmed down by about a third, the outer leaves and stalk removed, and then quartered. The choke can then be pulled out. As you prepare each artichoke or piece, drop it into acidulated water to stop it discolouring. Drain the artichokes, and add to the casserole together with the garlic cloves and half the white wine. Season lightly, and simmer very gently until the vegetables are just tender, adding more wine and the remaining olive oil from time to time. Check the seasoning, scatter on the chopped parsley and serve direct from the pan.
To make this into a more substantial dish, asparagus tips, freshly shelled peas and small pieces of ham can be added towards the end of the cooking time. A sprig of tarragon cooked with it gives a good flavour.
© 1995 Frances Bissell. All rights reserved.