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Recipe: Artichoke Heart Spread Super Quick and Easy

Lately I’ve received some requests for recipes. I recently started posting food photos of in my Instagram account. Okay. I’ll post some recipes.

If you’re looking for a traditional chatty style recipe blog with a ten-page backstory preceding every recipe, forget it. I don’t like trying to read those recipe blogs and I won’t write that way either.

Artichoke Heart Spread Recipe

Ingredients:

1 jar (6 oz.)  quartered and marinated artichoke hearts 

Extra Virgin Olive Oil

1 T. Lemon juice (fresh squeezed or from a glass bottle. Don’t use lemon juice from a plastic bottle unless you like plastic-flavored lemon juice)

Salt

Pepper

Italian seasoning or other seasoning blend

Directions: Drain the artichoke hearts. Chop ‘em up. Put ‘em in a bowl. Add lemon juice. Add enough olive oil that you can just see it pooling around the chopped artichoke hearts [But Maryanne, why did you tell me to drain the oil from the artichoke hearts only to add oil back later? Because now you're adding oil that tastes good. This is eating oil, not packing in jar oil]. Mix. Add salt, pepper, and seasoning. Blend to taste.

Transfer to container with a lid. Let the flavors hang out together and get acquainted for 24 hours, more or less.

Okay. Eat it. How? Mmm, I've got a couple of ideas.


Serving idea 1: Broiled egg in basket (serves 1) 


Ingredients:

Pan spray

2 slices bread

1 egg

Bechamel sauce or Mayonnaise or Mayo and cheddar cheese (read on, I'll explain)

Artichoke Heart Spread

Directions: First, be honest. Have you been storing the Artichoke Heart Spread in the fridge? Get it out and let it come to room temp. Nothing wrong with storing it that way, I do, but it's easier to work with at room temp.

Preheat broiler. I use the Hi broiler setting on my oven. Just turn it on and let it warm up while you prep the rest. Get a baking sheet. Spray it with pan spray.

Put one piece of bread on the baking sheet. Use a cookie cutter, preferably circle shaped, to stamp a whole in the middle of the second bread slice. Slap and smear a generous amount of edible adhesive on the first slice of bread. Edible adhesive is something like bechamel sauce or mayonnaise. If you want to go gooey and a bit messy, stir in some shredded cheddar cheese with your mayo and use that for edible adhesive. Are you done laying down edible adhesive? Good. Slap the holey second slice on top of the first. You now have a basket for your egg. Crack egg and drop gently in basket (hole in slice #2). If you're in a devil-may-care, not-looking-at-my-cholesterol-numbers-this-week mood, smear some more edible adhesive on the top of your bread basket. Just be careful to not disturb the egg.

Put under broiler. Check after 10 minutes by opening oven, grabbing edge of baking sheet, and giving it a jiggle. You want to the egg in the basket to have the barest hint of a jiggle, just a tiny bit. At the minimal jiggle point the white will be cooked but the yolk will still be runny - yum! Total time could be up to 20 or 25 minutes - I don't know your kitchen equipment, you do. Check it after 10 minutes then figure it out from there. In the meantime, eat the lonely circle you punched out of the second slice of bread.

When it's done, remove baking sheet from oven. Use spatula to gently transfer egg in a basket to plate. Generously top with Artichoke Heart Spread. Enjoy!

 

Serving idea 2: Chicken and Artichoke Toasty (serves 1)



Ingredients:

2 slices bread

Cooked chicken, 2 ounces at least (you may want more)

1 oz. light cream cheese

capers (optional)

Artichoke Heart Spread.

Directions: Again, broiler on Hi. Again, baking sheet. Again, Artichoke Heart Spread needs to be at room temp.

Put the two pieces of bread on the baking sheet. Drizzle them with some oil/lemon juice/spice liquid from your Artichoke Heart Spread. Put down a layer of chicken on each bread slice - chopped, shredded, sliced, whatever. It's your chicken.

In a bowl, combine 2 heaping tablespoons Artichoke Heart Spread with the light cream cheese. Smoosh the ingredients together with the back of a spoon and mix. Add capers if you want to [How many capers? Caper people know what they want. If you're new to capers, eat one. You'll know how much of that fabulous flavor you want to add after you try one]. Slap/drop dollops of the cream cheese/artichoke spread on the chicken. Spread it around a bit with the back of a spoon. It doesn't have to be perfectly even; you're going to smoosh the two slices of bread together later.

Put under broiler. Check it after 10 minutes. You want the top of the cheese/artichoke spread to be bubbling but not brown. When it's done, take it out of the oven.

Assemble the two halves into one glorious sandwich. Eat.