Rich and flavorful but very simple to prepare, stuffed artichokes make a good dinner party starter. They can be prepared well in advance and put into the oven at the last minute.
Prepare 8 small artichokes as described above, cutting off at least a third of their tops. Don't bother to remove the choke at this stage. Drop into boiling salted water and boil for I 0 minutes. Drain upside down in a colander. When cool enough to handle, remove the coarser outside leaves and the central leaves and the choke, to make cups.
Mix together 100 g of finely chopped ham, 100 g chopped cooked chicken, 2 tablespoons of cream (or use evaporated skim milk), chopped parsley, salt, pepper and a pinch of nutmeg. Stuff the artichoke cups with this mixture.
Put the cups into an oiled baking dish, sprinkle with grated Parmesan cheese and bake in an oven preheated to 220C for about 15 minutes. Serve.
Makes 4 servings.
From "Raw Materials" by Meryl Constance, The Syndey Morning Herald