Beef Stuffed Artichokes

One of my mother in law’s  signature dishes is beef stuffed artichoke bottoms. My father in law who loves gardening, plants artichokes in his garden. The peak artichoke season in Lebanon is from May to June and that’s when my parents in law harvest them, make a few meals,  and store the rest in the freezer.

While fresh artichokes taste much better than frozen or jarred ones, preparing them for cooking can be time consuming and painful. For the longest time, we would only make this meal when fresh artichokes were available.  I was excited to learn that jarred and canned artichoke bottoms (not hearts) are available commercially.  I picked up a jar at my local middle eastern market. Be sure to get the non-marinated variety that is stored in water. You can also try using canned artichoke bottoms, or you may be able to find frozen ones at your local supermarket.

Serves 2-3 people

Ingredients:
  • 1 jar artichoke bottoms or fresh artichokes- 6
  • 1/2 pound ground meat
  • 1  onion, chopped into small pieces
  • 1 1/2 tbs salt
  • 1/2 tbs black pepper
  • 1/2 ground all spice
  • 3 tbsp tomato sauce
  • 2 cups water
  • 1 garlic glove
Directions:
  1. In a large skillet, add chopped onions, 1 tbsp salt and cook on medium heat, stirring frequently until golden- about 5-7 minutes.
  2. Add ground beef, black pepper, all spice, salt and stir well with onions- cook until beef is fully cooked (about 20 minutes)- set aside.
  3. In a small pan, add 3 tbsp olive oil and pine nuts and cook over medium heat medium heat until golden (about 3 minutes)- stirring frequently.
  4. Scoop out the meat mixture with a spoon and fill each artichoke bottom- there will still be meat mixture left.
  5. Place meat filled artichokes in the bottom of a baking dish- line them up next to each other.
  6. Spread the rest of the meat mixture to the baking dish, around the artichokes.
  7. In a small bowl, mix tomato sauce and minced garlic clove, 1/2 tbs salt with water.
  8. Pour tomato sauce mixture on top of the artichokes.
  9. Preheat the oven to 350 °F.
  10. Cover baking dish with a foil and bake for 20 minutes prior to serving.
  11. Serve with rice on the side and enjoy! :).


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