D: These crisp delights are an appetizer staple all over Italy, usually served in a cone of paper, to go with a great roasted meat dish. This recipe calls for a quick dredging in flour before frying, but if you want an extra layer of mouthwatering crunch, try the beer batter mixture we use in our Fish Taco recipe.
Recipe courtesy of Debi Mazar and Gabriele Corcos
Show: Extra Virgin
Episode: Tuscany or Bust
Total:
36 min
Active:
20 min
Yield:
s: 6 servings
Level:
Easy
Total:
36 min
Active:
20 min
Yield:
s: 6 servings
Level:
Easy

Ingredients

  • 5 medium-size artichokes
  • Juice of 1 lemon
  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • Vegetable oil, for frying
  • Fish Tacos, recipe follows, for serving
Pico de Gallo:
  • 1 1/2 pounds mixed heirloom tomatoes, not overly ripe, medium dice
  • 3 tablespoons capers, rinsed and chopped
  • 3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • Juice of 1 lemon
  • 1/2 bunch fresh cilantro, stems removed, coarsely chopped
  • 1/2 small red onion, diced small (about 1/2 cup)
  • Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
Radishes with White Anchovies:
  • 1 bunch radishes, scrubbed clean, tops trimmed
  • 8 ounces (1 package) marinated white anchovy fillets (boquerones), sliced into strips
  • 1/4 cup packed fresh flat-leaf parsley leaves, chopped
  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper
Fish Tacos:
  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 cup medium ground semolina flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon sea salt
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 bottle lager beer
  • Canola oil, for frying (you'll need at least 4 to 8 cups)
  • 2 pounds tilapia
  • Twelve 4-inch soft corn tortillas, or smallest size available
  • 2 cups shredded lettuce, for serving
  • 1 avocado, sliced, for serving
  • Lemon wedges for serving

Directions

Watch how to make this recipe.

Using a paring knife, remove the outer leaves, and trim the artichoke down to the choke. Use a vegetable peeler to remove the woody outermost layer of the stem.

Use a spoon to remove the inedible hairy leaves and slice into quarters. Place the artichokes in a bowl of water with some lemon juice to keep the artichoke from oxidizing or turning brown.

Add the flour to a casserole dish and whisk in some salt and pepper.

Heat the vegetable oil in a high-sided skillet or Dutch oven.

Dredge the artichokes in the flour, shaking off the excess. Once the oil is hot, slip the artichokes in the hot oil and fry for about 4 to 5 minutes, using tongs to flip them from time to time.

Transfer the artichokes and let drain on a paper towel-lined platter and sprinkle with salt.

Serve with Fish Tacos.

Fish Tacos:

For the pico de gallo: Mix together the tomatoes, capers, olive oil, lemon juice, cilantro and onions in a large bowl. Season with salt and pepper.

For the radishes: Slice the radishes in half lengthwise, then into thin half-moons (and a few into quarter moons, if you want, for varied texture). Toss the radishes together with the anchovies, parsley and olive oil in a large bowl. Season with salt and pepper. 

For the fish tacos: Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Whisk together the flour, semolina flour, baking powder, sea salt and some pepper in a large bowl. Slowly whisk in the beer and set aside. 

Add enough canola oil to a large cast-iron or other low-sided skillet to come halfway up the sides. Heat the oil to 350 degrees F. (Use a deep fry thermometer to be sure - or do it the grandma way and add a piece of bread to see if it fries and browns - if it does, it's ready). 

Slice the tilapia into 1/2-inch strips or "finger"-size pieces. 

When the oil is hot, dip each piece of tilapia into the batter using tongs, allowing excess to drip off. Carefully add to the hot oil one piece at a time. Fry in batches until golden brown and the fish is cooked through, 3 to 5 minutes. Remove from the oil with a slotted spider or skimmer and drain on a paper-towel-lined baking sheet. 

Meanwhile, warm the tortillas by wrapping them in foil and placing them in the oven for 10 minutes. To serve, place one piece of fish on a warmed tortilla. Top with shredded lettuce and an avocado slice. Serve with a lemon wedge, pico de gallo and radishes with anchovies.

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