Compote of Artichoke, Orange, Coriander, and Mint

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By Paula Wolfert

This strange combination of ingredients is one of the greatest taste treats I have ever had.

Yield: 4-6 servings

Course:
Occasion:

Ingredients

  • 1 ½ lemons
  • 4 large artichokes
  • 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil plus some for drizzling
  • 2 cloves garlic peeled and sliced
  • 1/2 cup fresh orange juice
  • 2 thin-skinned oranges peeled and sectioned
  • 1 teaspoon salt or to taste
  • 1/2 teaspoon pepper
  • 1 tablespoon sugar
  • Pinch of ground coriander
  • 4 sprigs fresh mint

Directions

  1. Place about 4 cups and the juice of one-half lemon in a bowl. Clean the artichokes. Break off leaves as far as they will snap. Cut off the tips. Quarter and remove the hairy chokes. Rub with lemon and drop into the acidulated water.
  2. Heat the 2 tablespoons of olive oil in a flameproof earthenware or stainless shallow saucepan, add the garlic and sauté gently for 1 minute. Stir in the orange juice, the juice of the remaining lemon, 1 teaspoon salt and ½ teaspoon pepper. Cook, stirring with a wooden spoon, for an instant, then add the drained artichokes and ¼ cup water. Cover with crumbled wet parchment paper, and a tight fitting lid, and set over lowest heat to cook for 25 - 30 minutes. (Can also be baked in a preheated 350 degree oven, for same amount of time) Remove to a plate.
  3. Meanwhile, combine orange sections, any collected juices, coriander, and sugar in the saucepan. Cook, stirring, over medium low heat until reduced and syrupy, 10-15 minutes.
  4. With a slotted spoon, transfer glazed orange sections to a serving dish. Add the artichokes to the syrupy juices and cook until glazed. Transfer artichokes to the serving dish. Add the artichoke cooking juices to the skillet; reduce quickly to a few tablespoons, correct the seasoning with salt, pepper, a few drops of lemon juice, and a drizzle of fresh oil, and pour over the artichokes and oranges. Just before serving, scatter mint sprigs on top. Serve cool or chilled the following day.