Try, Try Again-Revival of a Favorite: Artichoke Squares

That’s what they say, if at first you don’t succeed.

Sorry to post this again, but it seems just this one previous post from earlier today may have been corrupted so that you couldn’t comment on that version. Let’s see if you can comment now on this second posting. And if you can, I shall remove the original post from the record once it’s been diagnosed. For sure, I’d never close my comments to you…I do really love hearing from you, it’s part of what makes blogging so fun! Technology is great when it works correctly. Thanks for your patience.

Bathed in that late afternoon cocktail glow.

Bathed in that late afternoon cocktail glow.

The weekend is upon us, and it’s time for a savory little nibble to go with that happy hour cocktail. Enter these delectable Artichoke Squares.

You know you want one!

You know you want one!

This is one of those throwback recipes, circa 1960 or so. I’ve updated it with some fresh ingredients, really tasty extra sharp cheddar cheese, herbs, spices and plain panko breadcrumbs instead of the canned, seasoned, Italian type.

And because I always try to use as few, or as minimally, processed foods and ingredients as I possibly can in my cooking, I decided to make my own marinade for the artichoke hearts instead of using the jarred marinated version. The result was wonderful. Fresh and clean-tasting marinated artichoke, and a commitment to marinate my own from now on for every recipe that calls for them.

Come a little closer...

Come a little closer…

But I digress. These Mad Men-worthy bites of deliciousness are the perfect companion for most any cocktail—from martinis to sweeter concoctions, with a glass of wine or a beer…and they make for some darn good eating without an adult beverage, as well. They’re rich and have a marvelous texture, so I like to cut them into small squares where I can eat more than one…or two…or three.

Now reach in and grab one or three!

Now reach in and grab one or three!

Since these Artichoke Squares can be made ahead and they freeze perfectly, they’re just right for that busy day when you need an appetizer you can pull together quickly and have ready for guests—or for yourself—pronto. Just take out what you need from the freezer, warm them in the oven on a cookie sheet and they’re ready to plate and eat. And they look pretty, too.

Cheers to the weekend!

Artichoke Squares Redux
Makes 54, some to eat now and some to freeze for later!

For the marinade:
1 teaspoon fresh lemon juice
1/4 cup rice vinegar, unseasoned
1/4 cup good quality extra virgin olive oil
1/4 cup water
1/4 teaspoon dried and crushed red pepper flakes
1/4 teaspoon kosher salt

Remaining ingredients:
1-14 oz can of artichoke hearts packed in water, drained, rinsed in water, drained again
1 large sweet onion, peeled and finely chopped
2 large cloves of garlic, peeled and minced
2 Tablespoons fresh flat-leaf Italian parsley, finely chopped
2 cups extra sharp cheddar cheese, grated (I use Cabot)
1/3 cup plain panko (Japanese style) breadcrumbs
1/4 teaspoon dried basil
1/4 teaspoon dried oregano
1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
1/8 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1/8 teaspoon dried and crushed red pepper flakes
4 eggs, beaten

In a small bowl, whisk together all of the marinade ingredients. Finely chop the artichoke hearts and add them to the marinade, stirring to coat them well. Allow them to marinate while you prepare your other ingredients.

Preheat the oven to 325 degrees F and lightly grease a 7 inch by 11 inch glass baking dish with olive oil and set aside. Drain the chopped artichoke through a fine meshed sieve, pressing on the artichoke, and reserving the marinade by allowing it to drain directly into a large, non-stick skillet. Set aside the artichoke hearts. Heat the marinade over medium heat, then add the onion and garlic and sauté in the marinade for about 5 minutes, until the onion is softened. Remove from heat.

In a large bowl, combine the artichoke hearts, the sautéed onion and garlic mixture with the marinade, and all of the remaining ingredients. Stir to combine well. Transfer the mixture to the prepared baking dish and smooth the surface, spreading evenly. Bake the mixture at 325 degrees F for 35 minutes. Remove from the oven and cool in the pan. Cut into small squares with a very sharp knife. Serve at room temperature or freeze the squares on a cookie sheet, then transfer to a freezer bag. When ready to use, remove what you need, warm them on a cookie sheet in a 300 degree oven, and serve slightly warm or at room temperature. These should keep a couple of months in the freezer, if they aren’t eaten first.

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31 thoughts on “Try, Try Again-Revival of a Favorite: Artichoke Squares

  1. Pingback: Comments, interrupted! | bits and breadcrumbs

  2. That’s better! I couldn’t comment and went up and down your blog trying to work out if I was blind to the comment section! I just had to hit the ‘like’ button. I love the look of these squares and yes, they’re absolutely perfect for ‘after fives’ xx

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    • I did the same thing Charlie! It was really strange and makes no sense as I didn’t touch a thing and subsequent posts had comments enabled again. Weird, but thanks for hanging in there with me! 🙂 I love that term “after fives.”

      Like

    • Thanks for bearing with me Uru, and again for your heads up on FB for me. Yes, I didn’t change a thing and the comments came back on the next post. Totally weird. The squares are pretty delish and I’m so glad you like them! 🙂

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    • I know, Claire, they are truly an old recipe from the 50’s and 60’s. I’ve never seen them in a cookbook, but an old friend of my mom’s, now long gone, used to make these when I was a kid. I copied the original recipe at some point long ago, then when I looked at it I really wanted to update it. I’ll be making them more often, now! 😉

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  3. There’s just so much to love about these!! The recipe makes A LOT of simply delicious looking appetizers. I’m hungry right now – I wish I had several of these to eat!

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  4. Love it! I am all about being able to make tasty nibbles in advance of a gathering and this looks like the perfect solution. A glass of wine in one hand and an artichoke square int he other. Its a portable tapas. Take Care, BAM

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    • Portable tapas…I love that! I’m keeping that one, BAM, thanks. These squares freeze so well, you really cannot tell the difference between the freshly baked and the frozen and reheated. I have a few in the freezer right now, waiting for their appropriate time. 🙂 Have a great week!

      Like

  5. Goodness, these sound so good. I’ve not cooked with artichokes lately and I really love them. These would be perfect for a gathering, especially if I could make them in advance. I’m hosting some friends next week for book club and these sound perfect for that evening. Thank you for the recipe (I’ll let you know how they turn out)!

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    • Lovely! Please do let me know how you like them, Allison, and thanks for your comment. I love getting feedback, because even if you make something many times in your own kitchen, the true test is in someone else’s! 🙂 Hope you enjoy these if you make them and that you have a great book club session.

      Like

    • We’re having cocktails tonight and will pull out some of these…we have ice and snow here today and tomorrow, so it’s a snow/ice day here….until we lose power! So glad you like these and hope you try some with your Friday cocktail! 🙂

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  6. Pingback: Gifts, Goodies and Greatest Hits | bits and breadcrumbs

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