My housemate and I went dumpster diving the other day and managed to acquire 8 POUNDS of artichokes. It was my first time dumpstering and I’m excited to go again! I am pretty proud that this was almost entirely free as the artichokes and onions were dumpstered and the Tofutti was free. WIN.
Let me tell you, having never cooked an artichoke, it was quite an adventure in my kitchen. Both myself and my roomie sifted through instructional YouTube videos, blogs, and our own wits, both gorging ourselves on the prickly artichokes, but finally…success! I looked at a few recipes, but we didn’t have spinach and I wanted to use as much dumpstered and/or free stuff as possible, so I ended up just throwing stuff in the pot instead and GODDAMN. So delicious. I may have polished off the entire ramekin full myself. Good thing there’s another one…
This is a little high on the processed vegan food, as I used Tofutti cream cheese since I got it for free. You could probably substitute it for 1/2 a pack (or 1 small Mori-Nu) container of silken tofu, mixed with some salt, a teaspoon of lemon juice and nutritional yeast and it’d be fine. As for the Daiya, try just topping with bread crumbs or roasted onions instead?
- approx. 12 artichoke hearts, cooked (fresh is better, but use what you have)
- 1 medium to large onion, chopped small
- 2 cloves garlic
- 3 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 cup chard, pulled off of the stems
- 1/4 - 1/3 cup non-dairy milk (I used soy)
- 1 container Tofutti Better Than Cream Cheese
- 1/3 cup Daiya of choice (I used cheddar because I had it) + whatever you want for topping
- 1 small roasted eggplant, peeled (optional, I just had it sitting there and threw it in)
- salt and pepper to taste
- If you're preparing your own artichokes, do this before anything as it takes FOREVER. The method that ended up working for us is microwaving 3 at a time upside-down in a glass bowl filled 1/3 way with water and covered in plastic wrap for about 10 minutes. We removed the very bottom leaves and cut the stem off at the base first, then let cool. Then removed all the leaves, scooped out the fuzzy bits and revealed the hearts (at last!).
- Preheat oven to 350F (190C).
- Chop your onions and garlic small and saute in a saucepan until translucent, be sure not to burn and try to avoid browning.
- While they're cooking quickly peel your chard off the stems and rinse, set aside.
- When onions and garlic are almost done, add the artichoke hearts and last tablespoon of olive oil and cook for 3-4 minutes, stirring occasionally.
- Add the chard and stir until wilted.
- Remove from heat and add to food processer (or blender, but it will be more annoying) with the soymilk. I'd start with 1/4 cup and add more if you think it needs it.
- Process until smooth, then transfer back to saucepan with the Tofutti cream cheese, 1/3 cup Daiya, and salt and pepper.
- Stir constantly over medium-low heat until everything is all melty and uniform.
- Transfer to an oven safe container, top with Daiya (or breadcrumbs?) and bake for about 15-20 minutes, until the Daiya is all melted and toasty.
Serve with bread, tortilla chips, pita, whatever. I am now addicted. However, preparing artichokes is a pain! However, a bit better now that I know which part isn’t poisonous.