An Oxymoron Called Delicious-Whole Wheat Deep Fried Artichokes


Fried vegetables–um, yea, they’re healthy.

I went on a lunch date with a really cool chic years ago. We went to Mimi’s Cafe and fell in love with a specific item on the menu that we ordered-deep fried panko crusted artichoke hearts. Those artichoke hearts were served with a delicious tangy mayo dipping sauce.

Well this chic and I have a few things in common. For one-she’s my mother, two-we both LOVE to cook, and three-we are pretty good at deciphering seasonings.
She immediately knew the artichokes were covered in panko bread crumbs and Parmesan cheese. And the sauce-as we sat there tasting it-came to the conclusion that it starred lemon and tarragon.
We went right home and recreated those delicious morsels of fried veggies and sauce. I mean, we had to let the family enjoy that appetizer too!
Well my Jesse bear adores artichokes-full of potassium and Vitamin C, fiber and protein, so he and I decided to make these together one evening. I was already making Quick Chicken Parmesan, so I thought it would pair well together. He loved them. He REALLY loves the dipping sauce. Especially with steamed artichokes-check out how to cook them by Elise Bauer from Simply Recipes, or on this page.
So I adapted the original recipe my mother and I created to an even healthier one, made with natural whole wheat bread crumbs with no artificial ingredients, like these from Fresh and Easy, fresh fat free Greek yogurt, and health beneficial olive oil mayonnaise. And any changes that make a recipe healthier always benefit my son’s autism. Also, for a vegan version, see changes below. So here’s the recipe and I hope you love them too!
Whole Wheat Deep Fried Artichokes with Tarragon Dipping Sauce
Artichoke Heart Ingredients:
1 can artichoke heart quarters, drained
1/2 cup whole wheat pastry flour mixed with 1 tsp Italian seasoning
1 egg beaten with 1 Tb water
1 cup natural whole wheat bread crumbs mixed with 1 tsp Italian seasoning
Canola oil for frying
2Tb Parmesan cheese for garnish
Dipping Sauce Ingredients:
1/3 cup nonfat plain Greek yogurt
1/3 cup mayonnaise made with olive oil
1 tsp tarragon
Juice of 1 lime
Arrange flour mixture, egg mixture and bread crumb mixture on three platters or pie plates.
Dip artichoke pieces individually first in flour, then egg mixture and finally bread crumb mixture, coating well and evenly with each mixture. Use one hand for the dry mixtures and one hand for the egg mixture to avoid “gooey fingers”.
Heat canola oil about 1 inch deep in a pan over medium high heat. You know the oil is ready when you drop a bit of bread crumbs in and it sizzles.

Read More »