Medias appeared in Aleppo courtesy of Spanish Jews who arrived in the Ottoman lands after Ferdinand and Isabella’s Edict of Expulsion . The word media is Spanish for “half.” The artichokes in this recipe are split in half lengthwise, filled with meat, and then cooked.
Artichoke Halves Stuffed with Ground Meat (Medias Shawki)
- Cooking and Prep: 1 h
- Serves: 8
Prepare the Stuffed Artichokes
Cut the artichokes in half lengthwise, remove the hairy choke, and trim one inch of bracts (leaves) from the top.
To make the filling, combine the beef, one egg, allspice, and salt in a medium mixing bowl and mix well. Fill the cavity of each artichoke with the filling.
Put the remaining egg in a shallow dish and beat it; put the matzah meal in another. Dip each artichoke in egg and then dredge in the matzah meal.
Heat the vegetable oil in a medium skillet over medium heat. Fry the artichokes, filling- side down, for two minutes, or until the breading is golden brown. Place the artichokes in a large skillet in a single layer. Do not stack.
To make the sauce, combine the tomato sauce, lemon juice, sugar, salt, and one cup water. Mix well.
Drizzle the olive oil into a medium ovenproof saucepan. Place the fried artichokes in the saucepan, filling- side up. Sprinkle the artichokes with salt. Cook over medium heat for 3 minutes, or until the artichokes begin to sweat. Pour the sauce over the artichokes. Bring to a boil over high heat, then reduce the heat to low, cover, and simmer for 30 minutes, or until the artichoke hearts are fork- tender.
Recipe excerpted with permission from Aromas of Aleppo (Ecco, 2007).
Photograph by Quentin Bacon