Braised Whole Artichokes (Carciofi alla Romana)

This dish of braised artichokes-the standard-bearer of traditional Roman vegetables-is remarkable for three things: the mystique of the carciofo romanesco (large Roman globe artichoke), the special way the artichoke is cut and the distinctive mintlike mentuccia (Roman dialect for nepitella, or calamint in English). Unfortunately, not everyone has access to real Roman artichokes or mentuccia. Just buy the most tender artichokes available and remove anything that isn't edible. A carciofo alla romana should have an almost buttery texture. The more olive oil you use, the better the dish will be.
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