1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
4 cloves garlic
Fresh thyme or rosemary, optional
1/2 cup flavorful black olives, pitted
12 little (or baby) artichokes
1 pint grape tomatoes, halved or left whole, or about 1 1/2 cups any other tomatoes, chopped
Chopped fresh parsley leaves for garnish.
1. Combine oil and garlic in a large skillet (cast iron is good), over low heat. When garlic sizzles, add herb, olives and a pinch of salt.
2. Meanwhile, one at a time, prepare artichokes: remove hard leaves, then cut off spiky end, about an inch down from top; trim bottoms, cut artichokes in half, and add them to pan as they are ready, cut side down. When about half of them are in pan, raise heat so they brown a bit; move them around as you add remaining artichokes so that they brown evenly.
3. When artichokes are nicely browned, add tomatoes and a splash of water. Cook until chokes are tender, 10 to 20 minutes, adding a little more water if necessary. Taste and adjust seasoning, garnish and serve hot, warm or at room temperature.
Yield: 4 servings.
Time: 40 minutes
Per serving: 206 calories; 16 g fat (2 g saturated fat; 70 percent calories from fat); 15 g carbohydrates; 0 mg cholesterol; 327 mg sodium; 6 g protein; 8 g fiber.