Fried Artichokes

Artichokes are a little tricky to cut but totally worth the effort, they’re delicious and packed with calcium, vitamin C, A and iron.

Remember to place cut artichokes in water with lemon juice as you go so they don’t oxidize.

Serves 6-8 people


  • 8-10 Fresh Artichokes
  • 2 Lemons
  • 3 Eggs
  • Olive Oil for Frying
  • 1 Cup Seasoned Bread Crumbs
  • 2 Tbsp Pecorino Cheese, Grated
  • 3 Cloves of Garlic, Grated
  • 1 Tbsp Fresh Parsley, Chopped
  • 1/2 tsp Black Pepper


  • Prepare artichokes by properly peeling them. To do this, use your knife to break away the ‘leaves’ of the artichoke. You know where to break them, by where it is easiest for them to snap on their own, when pulled slightly. As you get closer to the center of the artichoke, and it is no longer easy to break the ‘leaves’ off, work your knife around the outside of the artichoke, peeling away the layers until you hit the tender center. Be sure to slice them open and check for fuzzy insides. You do not want to eat anything fuzzy on the inside, so be sure to cut those out.
  • Soak the cut artichokes in lemon water.
  • Grate the garlic, and place in a bowl, then add the grated cheese.
  • Crack and mix in the eggs, adding black pepper to taste (about 1/2 tsp), and chopped parsley and whisk all items together.
  • Take the artichoke one by one, and dip into the egg batter, then roll it into the bread crumbs (placed in a bowl), and then place into a third empty bowl.
  • Once all of them are breaded, put olive oil in a deep frying pan, on medium high heat. Once oil is heated through, place artichokes in one by one and cook until they are golden brown on all sides. After they are cooked, place them into a strainer, which has a paper towel in the bottom, and is hanging inside of a bowl. This will allow them to drip any excess oil.
  • When serving, top with grated cheese if desired!


  • If you use baby artichokes, you should cut them in half, and if using regular artichokes, you should cut them into quarters -however, you can cut them to whatever size you wish.
  • To make life easier, you can also purchase frozen artichoke hearts, which will be ready to go. **You could even use a pot for a super easy cleanup.
  • Periodically, while cooking, use a slotted spoon to fish out the “crumbs” that end up in the oil. This will help to keep the oil clean, so that you can keep using it.
  • When you start to cook, place tin foil to the side of the pan, where you will carry the artichokes over to the strainer. This will make for a very easy cleanup, with no oil drips on your stove!

Fried Zucchini Blossoms ~ Fior di Zucca Fritti

You can buy fresh zucchini blossoms in season but they are very expensive and that takes the fun and satisfaction out of this recipe honestly. So start early and plant a garden. This recipe is the sole reason I even plant zucchini and pumpkins in my garden every summer! Yes pumpkin blossoms work for this recipe too! They are hard to distinguish actually but I find pumpkins can be heartier than zucchini and the pumpkin especially yield a ton of blossoms so I plant both. These two veggies really are not my favorites but the exquisite blossoms they produce ARE! I use them on top of pizza, in risotto, even raw in summer salads, but my family’s favorite is fried and battered.

You will want to pick the blossoms from your garden early in the morning, while they are still open (as the sun gets higher they close up). This will allow you to see and pick out any critters that are hiding in them. Picking them when the blossoms are open also makes them easier to stuff. If you can’t fry them all at once, do what I do. Pick them every summer morning and store them in an airtight container with a paper towel in your fridge. As long as long as you don’t overcrowd and squish them they will last at least a week or two. You may want to invest in a few extra large containers just for this purpose. When you are ready to fry you should have a decent amount of flowers to cook up and enjoy! Oh, and don’t wash the flowers, simply remove the pistil from inside and the sepals from the top of stem. Keep the stem on as a handy-dandy “Fior fi Zucca Fritti” holder. And for the love of Nonna and all things Italian- please do NOT throw away an ‘extra batter”. See Nonna Notes below.




4 cups double “00”  flour (you can replace with all-purpose but we really prefer “00”)

2 tablespoons parsley fresh chopped

2 tablespoons kosher salt

3 cloves of fresh garlic grated

1 teaspoon black pepper

4 eggs beaten

4 ½  cups sparkling water (traditionally used to add crispness to the batter, you can also just use plain water and add a ¼ teaspoon of baking powder if you wish instead)

½ cup grated pecorino romano cheese

For frying:

12-16 fresh zucchini blossoms (sepal and pistil removed)

Neutral oil for frying 1” deep (light olive oil or vegetable oil)

Additional options:

Fresh Mozzarella

Scamorza cheese


Grated zucchini for extra batter hovies



In a bowl mix together the flour, eggs, garlic, parsley, water, grated cheese, salt & pepper with a fork or hand mixer. If you are stuffing the blossoms, do so now, remember less is more, so just 1 anchovy and ½” X 2” piece of cheese per blossom. Feel free to mix it up, keep some plain and concote your own fillings as you like. Then place each blossom in the batter one by one, gently coating it all around with batter.  Place about an 1 inch of canola or vegetable oil in a deep pan for frying. Turn flame to medium-high, once a drop of plain batter sizzles up and floats turn the heat down to medium and begin fryingl. Fry in batches a few blossoms at a time, being careful not to crowd the pan. Fry until  golden brown and they float you will have to turn them once. Place hot fried flowers onto a paper towel lined plate and enjoy right away! You may sprinkle with a little sea salt if you like.

Nonna Notes:  If you have extra batter don’t let it go to waste you can fry it, just as it is for a treat or you can add a graded zucchini to it. Grate zucchini on a box grater, add a little salt, squeeze out all the excess water with your hands and mix into the excess batter. Fry the same as you with the flowers.



This traditional Sicilian summer time staple makes for a spectacular appetizer or meal for those too-hot to cook days. Pile it on top of toasted Altamura bread.

Cook’s note: Caponata is even better the day after and keeps, covered and chilled, 1 week. Bring to room temperature before serving.