Artichoke Stew with Peas
2 teaspoons extra virgin olive oil
2 cloves fresh garlic, thinly sliced
1 small leek, split lengthwise, rinsed free of dirt, cut into 1-inch pieces
Generous pinch crushed red pepper flakes
Generous pinch crushed saffron
2 stalks celery, thin oblong slices
1 medium carrot, thin oblong slices
2 cups canned halved artichoke hearts (in water, not oil)
1 cup diced tomatoes
1 cup cooked cannellini beans
1/2 cup spring or filtered water
4-5 sprigs fresh basil, leaves removed, left whole
1 cup fresh, frozen peas
2-3 leaves steamed kale, finely shredded
Place oil, garlic and leek in a heavy sauce pan over medium heat. When the leeks begin to sizzle, add a pinch of salt, red pepper flakes and saffron and sautee until leeks are quite limp, about 2 minutes. Stir in celery, a pinch of salt and sautee for 1 minute. Stir in carrot, a pinch of salt and sautee for 1 minute.
Stir in artichoke hearts, tomatoes, beans and add water. Bring to a boil, cover, reduce heat to low and cook until carrots are tender, 12-15 minutes. Add 2/3 teaspoon salt and cook for 5 minutes more. Stir in basil leaves and peas and cook for 1 minute. Arrange steamed kale on a platter and spoon stew in the center. Serve hot.
Makes 4-5 servings.