You know it's a holiday when the Sambuca comes out. And I don't mean my kitty.
Also known as Sambuca.
Besides sambuca, there's a couple other "specials" that only appear around the holidays in our house.
It's not particularly artichoke season; I think we mainly eat them around the holidays because they're expen$ive, but we allow those kinds of splurges for the holidays.
I'm not sure what the feeling out there about artichokes is, but let me tell you, if you roast any vegetable with garlic, olive oil, and parmesan cheese, it's going to be delicious. So in case you're interested, here's how to make them, on location at Grandma's house.
You have to start by cleaning them and snipping the prickly edges (artichokes are a type of thistle). Then boil them for about an hour to soften them up (it might take less time with fewer artichokes, but we made eleven...)
While they're boiling, thinly slice your garlic (we used three cloves for our large batch), and your parmesan not as thin-- and try not to eat it all as you go...
Then line them up in your pan and stuff them. You only want a piece or two of garlic for each 'choke, but be liberal with the cheese... who doesn't love them some melty parmesan! Also, put a couple ladle-fulls of the boiling water at the bottom to keep them moist as they bake.
Grandma demonstrates the stuffing.
Drizzle with olive oil, sprinkle your salt and pepper, and then bake in the oven at 350 until the edges are dark and the cheese has melted.
In case you're a super novice: to eat them, pull off the leaves and eat the tender ends (as well as the fillings) until you're down to the heart. Then scrape off the pricklies and eat the juicy base.
** Dedicated to my Dad, who is a computer MacGuyver. <3