Preserved Artichoke Hearts with Spices and Thyme

by meike peters

Marinated Artichokes

I’ve been wanting to marinate artichokes for so long, ever since I had my own kitchen in fact, which is quite a while ago. I took my time and over the years I discovered the advantages of a pantry packed with jars of homemade jams, chutneys, preserved lemons and fruits but now I want to see some artichoke hearts cooked in wine and vinegar, with lots of spices on my shelves as well. I love to fill this space with all the jars that make my favourite food so handy and always available, I don’t have to worry about industrial preservatives which are banned in my kitchen.

The process of preserving has a wonderful side effect, it’s so relaxing! I understand why my grandmother used to have a room in her cellar packed to the ceiling with preserving jars and bottles, cherries, pears  and plums, German apple purée, gherkin, jams, so much that even my big family didn’t manage to eat everything that she produced. I imagine that she enjoyed preserving food as much as I do now, standing peacefully in her kitchen, keeping an eye on the bubbling and steaming food in the pots. When I’m done with cooking and have filled my culinary products into the jars and line them up on a table, I feel so satisfied and rewarded for the work I’ve done, it’s truly therapeutical!

Artichoke hearts preserved in olive oil are great on bread sprinkled with parsley, on crostini or pizza, mixed with pasta or in a risotto. You could also fry them together with your omelet, mix them into a Mediterranean salad or enjoy them pure on an summery antipasti platter.

Marinated Artichokes

 Preserved Artichokes Hearts

For 6 artichoke hearts preserved in an 800ml jar you need

baby artichokes 6
water 900ml
white wine 350ml
white wine vinegar 150ml
garlic, quartered, 2 cloves
bay leaves 2
black peppercorns 8
juniper berries 5
thyme 8 small sprigs
salt 1 teaspoon
lemon 1/2, to prevent the artichokes from turning brown
olive oil to fill the preserving jar
spirit to sterilise the rim of the jar

Peel the artichoke stems, if it isn’t soft but woody you have to cut it off. Pluck the hard outer leaves and cut the artichoke’s tip off (1/3 – 1/2 of the artichoke), just the soft parts of the leaves should be left. Loosen the hairy choke with a knife and scoop it out with a spoon. Keep the prepared artichoke heart in a bowl of cold water and the juice of half a lemon to avoid it discolouring while you’re finishing the rest.

In a large pot, bring all the ingredients to a boil, add the artichoke hearts and cook for 10 minutes.

Sterilise the preserving jar in boiling water for 5 minutes. Take it out, let it dry for a few minutes and dip the rim of your jar in the spirit and wash out the lid with the alcohol as well.

Drain the artichokes and put them in the sterilised jar, fill with olive oil till covered and add some of the spices and thyme sprigs. The jar should be filled with oil to the top! Close the jar, keep in your pantry or enjoy immediately.

Marinated Artichokes


Marinated Artichokes