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Bitter Greens, Artichokes, and Shallots with Poppy Seeds

(recipe, Greg Malouf & Lucy Malouf)


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Introduction

This dish was inspired by one we ate at Çiya restaurant in Istanbul. There were many meze dishes of wild greens we enjoyed that day, but we fell in love with the combination of strong, bitter greens and the barely discernible nutty crunch of poppy seeds. In this version, a squeeze of lemon juice and a pat of butter at the end soften the bitterness. Serve this dish warm or at room temperature as part of a meze selection. It also makes a great lunch dish with a poached or fried egg and some warm flat bread.

Ingredients

  1. ¼ cup extra-virgin olive oil
  2. 6 fresh artichoke hearts, cut into quarters and kept in acidulated water
  3. 12 small shallots, peeled and halved
  4. 1 leek, white part only, cut lengthwise into thin strips and washed
  5. 1 tsp. poppy seeds, lightly crushed
  6. ¼ tsp. hot paprika
  7. ¼ tsp. freshly ground black pepper
  8. 1 tsp. ground sumac, plus more for sprinkling
  9. 1⅓ lb. chicory, roots trimmed
  10. 5 oz. Swiss chard, shredded lengthwise
  11. 5 oz. chicken stock
  12. Squeeze of lemon juice
  13. 2 oz. unsalted butter

Steps

  1. Heat the oil in a heavy-bottomed saucepan and add the drained artichokes, shallots, and leek. Sauté over low heat for a few minutes, then add the poppy seeds, paprika, pepper, and sumac; cook for a further couple of minutes. Add the chicory, Swiss chard, and stock.
  2. Bring to a boil, then lower the heat and simmer, uncovered, for 8 to 10 minutes, or until the artichokes and onions are tender.
  3. Remove the pan from the heat and stir in the lemon juice and butter. Put into a warmed serving bowl. Sprinkle with a little more sumac and serve.