Roasted Baby Artichokes and Asparagus with Lemon-Oregano Aioli

Roasting vegetables brings out their natural sweetness and crispy edges adds a toothsome quality that makes them extra-delicious with a garlicky aoili. 


1 cup mayonnaise, such as Best Foods
1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
2 teaspoons chopped fresh oregano
2 garlic cloves, pressed
1 teaspoon fresh lemon juice
1/2 teaspoon finely grated lemon peel
Salt and pepper, to taste

Artichokes and asparagus:
Juice from one lemon
12 baby artichokes
3 tablespoons olive oil, divided (lemon infused olive oil is especially good)
2 lbs. (about 2 bunches) thick asparagus spears, tough ends removed


For aioli:

Place all ingredients for aioli in processer bowl, except for salt and pepper. Process until smooth. Season aioli to taste with salt and freshly ground black pepper. Cover and refrigerate.

For artichokes and asparagus:

Fill a large stockpot with water and bring to a boil. While water is heating, fill large bowl with cold water and squeeze the juice of one lemon into water.

Remove dark outer leaves from artichokes, leaving only inner yellow leaves. Cut 1 inch off the top of the artichoke, trim stem around base of artichoke. Cut artichoke in half lengthwise, and immediately place in water with lemon juice.

When water comes to boil, add 1 tablespoon salt. Drain artichokes, then add to boiling water and blanch 3 minutes. Drain again. Cover and chill.

Preheat oven to 425°F.

Line two rimmed baking sheets with foil. Place artichoke halves on one baking sheet. Drizzle 1 tablespoon olive oil over spears. Sprinkle with salt and pepper and toss to coat with olive oil. Spread in one layer on baking sheet.

On second baking sheet, arrange asparagus spears in one layer and drizzle with remaining 2 tablespoons olive oil. Sprinkle with salt and pepper and roll to coat spears evenly in olive oil.

Place artichokes in oven first. Roast for 5 minutes, then add asparagus to oven and roast until artichokes are tender, about 10 minutes longer. (Total time for artichokes, about 15 minutes; asparagus will be done in 10 minutes.)

Arrange artichokes and asparagus on platter. Place bowl of aioli in center of platter for dipping.

YIELD: 8 servings

SOURCE: Adapted from recipe by Tori Ritchie, Bon Appétit, June 2010

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