50 gr (1.8 ounces) unsalted butter
50 gr (1.8 ounces) all-purpose flour
500 ml (0.11 gallons/0.9 pints) milk
Grated grana or parmigiano
(Optional: 1 egg)
preparazione del ripieno
1 - Remove the tough outer leaves from the artichokes, cut the point off, so as to eliminate the spiny tips, and the stem, keeping the tender part aside.
2 - Cut each artichoke in quarters, trim off the choke and peel the outer part of the stem.
3 - Soak artichoke quarters and stems in a bowl with water and the the juice of a lemon squeezed.
4 - Wash the artichokes and stems under running water and boil them in a pot full of salted water, for 20 minutes, until soft.
5 - Drain the artichokes and cut them and the stems into small pieces, eliminating the tough leaves, if any. Stir in to the bechamel.
6 - Pour the mix in a ceramic pan, dust with grated grana or parmigiano and add a few butter flakes.
7 - Put in preheated oven at 180C (350F) and bake for 15/20 minutes, until the top is lightly browned.
preparazione della salsa béchamel
1 - In the meantime, prepare a bechamel, melting butter in a medium pot,
2 - then adding flour stirring vigorously with a whisk to avoid lumps.
3 - Pour the milk, previously heated, a little at a time and stirring continuously.
4 - Once poured all milk,
5 - set to boil and let cook for 5 minutes.
6 - At the end, add a generous pinch of salt, a quarter of a teaspoon of ground nutmeg, and 3 tablespoons of grated grana or parmigiano.