Each year during the short and chilly month of February, Valentine’s Day arrives full of expectations—it’s easy to lose sleep over making the right move. But ask anyone: Nothing is more romantic than a delicious meal where they don’t have to lift a finger.
While 25% of Americans dine out on Valentine’s Day, skip the reservation book this year and spoil your special someone with a healthy, home-cooked meal, prepared with love. Fixing these stuffed artichokes takes enough effort to show you care, without requiring any serious culinary chops. Infused with a modest dose of cannabis olive oil, the artichokes are a wonderful showpiece as a light main course or an elegant appetizer.
The holistic wellness expert, Dr. Josh Axe, includes artichokes in any healing diet for their anti-inflammatory properties. Though the artichoke hearts are most prized for their flavor and versatility, the leaves are a rich source of anti-oxidants and phytonutrients.
Many classic artichoke preparations rely on dipping the leaves in simple saturated fats, like butter or mayonnaise. But by packing the leaves with a simple, Italian-inspired stuffing, each bite is already filled with savory flavor.
Ingredients for stuffing
Ingredients for artichokes
*Cannabis-infused olive oil is easy to make and the DIY version saves money. But at home, potency levels vary wildly depending on flower vs. leaf, method and marijuana strain. To guarantee you and your Valentine have a pleasant night, [we recommend using Om Edibles Medicated Olive Oil](https://www.hellomd.com/products/58accbef5dc77b0007e75241/medicated-extra-virgin-olive-oil. Each teaspoon contains a lab-tested 15 mg dose of tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), which yields 22.5 mg of THC per artichoke in this recipe. Consider subbing 1 tablespoon regular olive oil for medicated if you want a lower dose of THC or you’re unsure of your THC tolerance level.
If making your own breadcrumbs, place 3 or 4 slices of bread (a baguette works even better) in the bowl of your food processor. Pulse until crumbs are fine. Alternatively, measure 1 cup of store-bought breadcrumbs.
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Spread breadcrumbs across a baking sheet and toast in oven, stirring at least once, until golden brown, about 10 minutes. Cool before tossing with grated Parmesan, garlic, soppressata, salt, pepper and medicated olive oil in a mixing bowl.
Cut off artichoke stems and discard, along with top inch of artichoke. (A serrated knife works best.) Using kitchen shears, snip half an inch off remaining leaf tips. Rub trimmed artichoke top and leaves with a lemon wedge.
Resting each artichoke on its base, separate the leaves with your thumbs and gently pull out purple leaves from center—move carefully as even small leaves can be thorny.
Continue plucking the purplish, then yellow, interior leaves from center, until the fuzzy part is exposed at the artichoke’s heart. Using a melon baller or teaspoon, scoop out fuzzy choke. Squeeze a lemon wedge into the cavity.
Spoon about 2 tablespoons of stuffing into each artichoke. Next, holding an artichoke over the bowl of stuffing with one hand, carefully pack the artichoke leaves with stuffing, using your fingers to gently press the mixture into the pockets of the artichoke leaves.
Combine half a cup of white wine, a pinch of salt and few grinds black pepper into a medium-sized pot. Add artichokes, packing them snugly next to one another, leaves facing up. Add half a cup of water, adding more as needed until liquid reaches halfway up artichokes. Drizzle with additional olive oil, using canna-olive oil if desired.
Covering pot tightly, bring to boil, and simmer on low until leaves are tender, about 45 minutes. Remove artichokes with tongs and serve artichokes warm. Eating slowly, work your way from the thorny leaves to the soft heart.
Photo credit: Danielle MacInnes
If you’re new to cannabis and want to learn more, take a look at our Cannabis 101 guide. HelloMD can help you get your medical marijuana recommendation; it's easy, private and 100% online.