Artichokes Made Easy
1. Snip off leaf tips of 1 artichoke with kitchen shears. Cook it, covered, in a steamer insert in a large saucepan, about 25 minutes (bring water to boil first, then reduce to medium heat). When cool, pull off leaves and arrange on a serving platter. Trim off the bottom and the choke and chop heart.
2. Cook 2 ounces pancetta or bacon in a skillet until crisp; add 1 cup bread crumbs and 1/4 teaspoon chopped thyme and cook 2 to 3 minutes more.
3. Add artichoke heart to pancetta mixture with 1/2 chopped tomato, 1/4 cup mayonnaise and 3 tablespoons Parmesan. Spoon onto leaves.
Serves 10 to 12.
Originally published in Ladies' Home Journal, April 2009.