Since spring started I've been flicking through the spring section of Fabrizia Lanza's great book "Coming Home To Sicily" a lot. I love Sicilian style spring dishes, heavy on the artichokes, broad beans and wild fennel. From it, I've made fava bean and wild fennel soup, pasta with wild fennel and sardines(so brilliant!) and this artichoke caponata a number of times. It's so delicious. Very simple to prepare, much better made in advance and the artichokes soak up the sweet and sour tang of the tomato sauce beautifully.

Artichoke Caponata
Adapted from a Fabrizia Lanzas recipe 
3 large artichokes
3 large stalks of celery, washed and sliced
1 brown onion, thinly sliced
2-3tbs extra virgin olive oil(enough to cover the bottom of the pan)
1/2 cup of water
1/2 cup of dry white wine
1 1/2 cups of tomato sauce
1/4 cup of capers
1 tbs brown sugar
1/4 cup of red wine vinegar
1 1/2 cups of tomato sauce
1/2 cup of pitted green olives
Salt and pepper

Bring a medium pot of water to the boil and cook the celery for around 5 minutes. Remove, strain and place in a bowl of cold water.

Prepare the artichokes by removing the tough outer leaves. Then cut in half, scoop out the fuzzy centre and slice into half inch pieces.

In a large fry pan, cook the onion and olive oil over medium heat until soft and light gold. Add the artichokes and stir, add the water and wine. Bring to the boil and then simmer for around 15 minutes. Add the celery, tomato sauce, capers, sugar, vinegar, sauce, olives and season. Simmer 2-3 minutes and cool. Serve at room temperature.

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