Courtesy of some good old fashioned Youtube cooking video browsing, I landed on Michelin-starred Raymond Blanc presenting a classic dish from Provence, barigoule. Barigoule is a tried-and-true stew that is incredibly rich, yet doesn’t use more than 1 or 2 ingredients that are not already in your pantry or refrigerator. While there is a little bit of work involved with cleaning the artichokes, everything else is fairly straightforward.
To clean artichokes, first fill a bowl with water and half of a lemon’s juice as well as the squeezed lemon. This is to keep the artichoke from oxidizing, which happens the moment you begin to expose the heart. One needs to work quickly and with a gameplan when cleaning artichokes. I’m certainly not the best person to advise another on how to clean an artichoke: there are a number of hurdles to jump over, little to show for the considerable effort, and they can go from beautifully cooked to overcooked with a little too much heat. All that being said, it is a special treat to enjoy when you have a little extra time for prep. Finally, bread is not optional, you will want it to soak up all of the delicious stew juice.
Barigoule: 4-6 servings
- 1 onion, medium dice
- 2 carrots, obliqued
- 6 artichokes, hearts cored and cleaned, cut in half lengthwise
- 4 sprigs thyme
- 3 bay leaves
- 6 whole cloves garlic
- 1/4 cup parsley, chopped
- 1 lemon, for juice and garnish
- 1/2 cup olive oil
- 1 cup white wine
- salt and pepper to taste
Put oil, onion, carrots, garlic, bay leaves, and thyme in a medium saucepan on medium low heat, if you see bubbles in the oil it is too hot. Heat everything gently, stirring occasionally, until onions are softened. Add the drained artichokes and cook for a few minutes. Turn up the heat to medium high and add wine 1 minute later, turn the heat back to simmer, cover the pan, and let cook for about 10-15 minutes.Strain the liquid through a sieve and use a hand blender to emulsify the oil/wine mixture, add lemon juice, salt, and pepper to taste. Place the vegetables in bowls, pour the emulsified liquid over, and garnish w/parsley and lemon slices. Don’t eat the bay leaves, but the garlic should be beautifully mild and roasted and the thyme is excellent as well. Serve w/bread.