Venetian artichokes - botoli
I don't know if I have ever told you that, together with tardive radicchio from Treviso, artichokes are one of my favorite vegetables. I like them cooked and raw, and when in season, they appear on our table very often!
We use them mainly as side dish, great to accompany anything, from rice to chicken, fish or legumes.
Simply sautéed with a little bit of lemon and garlic, quick and delicious.
Among the many things, Venice is also known for the carciofo violetto from Sant'Erasmo. The first sprouts are called castraure, and after that we get the botoli, the small artichokes you see in the pictures.
Because the production is limited, they tend to cost more than the artichokes arriving from Sardinia, Livorno, and Apulia, which are still delicious. BTW, somewhere I read that Italians are the people that eat more artichokes in the world...
Rich in vitamins and minerals, these green delicacies are said to improve liver and digestive health, and may help regulate blood pressure and sugar levels. Loaded in nutrients, their exquisite taste will make it easy to add them to your meals :)
Ingredients (for 2, as a side dish):
12 baby artichokes
2 fresh cloves of garlic
Remove leaves from artichokes, cut in 6/8 small parts and put into a bowl with lemon juice and water.
Heat a pan with some olive oil, add the fresh cloves of garlic and the artichokes. After about a minute, add some lemon juice and some water, lower the flame to medium and cook for about 8 minutes.
If the pan gets dry, just add some more water and lemon.
Once ready, garnish with some chopped parsley, grind a little bit of black pepper and serve.
Excellent as a side dish, or also to use in a frittata or pie.
Buon appetito 😀