Page 48

DAN'S PAPERS, May 1, 2009 Page 47

Food / Dining Simple Art of Cooking Silvia Lehrer My grass is greener than I could ever remember – no doubt due to April showers and we sure had plenty of it. Yet green is more than a beautiful lawn. It’s everywhere – from ‘green’ energy efficient products, to the ‘green’ canvas bags being carried into supermarkets and specialty stores to carry out our groceries, to kitchens that are going completely green with ‘green’ materials from floors to counter tops. Yes, we all want to do our part to save the planet and to save ourselves, and one of the best ways is to simply eat local and to eat ‘green.’ The cool green colors of watercress, zucchini and leek combine to create a splendid ‘green’ soup. Leafy artichokes can be enjoyed in a variety of ways, but have you had a stuffed artichoke, Italian style, lately? I had the delectable artichoke below years ago in an Italian restaurant and have delicious memories scraping every last bit of the unctuous stuffing along with the meaty artichoke leaves between my teeth. The green flower-like creation makes a delectable first course and presents beautifully at table. With warmer days welcoming the spring harvest and farm stands opening at a quickening pace, the best is yet to come. STUFFED ARTICHOKE ITALIAN STYLE Serve 2 or 4 2 jumbo globe artichokes, about 8-9 oz. each Zest 1 lemon, then halve For the stuffing 4 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil 2-3 cloves garlic, minced 2 anchovies, chopped Reserved lemon zest 4-5 tablespoons toasted breadcrumbs, preferably homemade 1 tablespoon capers, rinsed 1/4 cup coarsely chopped flat-leaf Italian parsley 2 tablespoons freshly grated Parmesan cheese 3-4 cups chicken broth To finish 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil 1-2 cloves garlic, finely minced 2-3 tablespoons coarsely chopped flat-leaf Italian parsley 1/2 cup chicken broth 1. Cut off artichoke stem end evenly at the base. Discard the bruised leaves at the bottom and then cut

And Now ... Eating “Green” off points of each leaf with kitchen shears, spiraling the vegetable to about 1-inch from the top. With a serrated knife, make a sharp straight cut across to discard the upper portion. Separate leaves with your thumbs and pull out the purple leaves from the center to expose the fuzzy choke. Scoop out the choke with a melon ball cutter or grapefruit spoon. Rinse clean and then squeeze halved lemon over the exposed surfaces. Repeat with remaining artichoke. 2. For the stuffing, heat oil in a skillet and sauté the garlic for 40-50 seconds. Stir in the anchovies, lemon zest and breadcrumbs. Add capers, parsley and cheese. Stir to mix and remove from heat. Taste for seasoning. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. 3. Carefully spread the leaves for stuffing. Spoon a little stuffing in between them, starting at the bottom, and then put about one tablespoon into the cavity. Repeat with second artichoke. S tand artichokes upright in a baking dish just large enough to hold them. Pour in enough broth to come about 1/3 the way up the sides of the artichokes. Cover securely with aluminum foil and bake about one hour or until a leaf pulls away easily when done. Transfer artichokes to two soup plates or halve them to serve four. Warm the broth. 4. Heat olive oil and sauté garlic for 30-40 seconds. Add parsley and stir to mix. Add one cup of broth, spoon the cooking liquid equally around each artichoke and serve warm or at room temperature.

WATERCRESS, LEEK AND ZUCCHINI SOUP Serves 6 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil 1 tablespoon unsalted butter 2-3 leek, thoroughly washed, about 2 cups thinly sliced 1 1/2 pounds narrow zucchini, peeled and diced 5 cups chicken stock, preferably homemade or low sodium canned Coarse (kosher) salt to taste and freshly ground pepper 1 bunch watercress, stems removed 1/2 cup half and half 2 tablespoons minced chives 1. Warm oil with butter in a large saucepot. When butter melts, add the leek and zucchini and stir to mix. Cover with a square of wax paper to ‘sweat’ the vegetables for 6-7 minutes. Uncover, discard paper; pour on stock and season to taste with salt and pepper. Bring to a boil, add watercress, adjust heat and cook at a brisk simmer for 25-30 minutes. 2. Purée the soup directly in the pot the soup cooked in with a hand immersion blender or in batches in a blender. Return to rinsed out soup pot, add half and half, reheat over low heat, taste for seasonings and serve with chive garnish.

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Dan's Papers May 1, 2009  

Dan's Papers, the 51-year-old bible of the Hamptons, is owned by Manhattan Media, a multi-media publishing company based in New York City,...

Dan's Papers May 1, 2009  

Dan's Papers, the 51-year-old bible of the Hamptons, is owned by Manhattan Media, a multi-media publishing company based in New York City,...