Preheat oven to broil setting. Cut the top 1/4 off the choke and snap off the outer leaves until you reach pale green, soft leaves. Using a spoon, remove the hairy choke from the center and discard. Immediately plunge in acidulated water to avoid discoloration. Repeat with remaining artichokes. Drain the artichokes and spin to dry. Toss in a bowl with oil, and season with salt and pepper. Lay the chokes out on a sheet pan lined with foil and place on the lower rack of the oven, and broil for 5 to 6 minutes. Flip the artichokes and return to the oven for 3 minutes. Eat as they are or marinate in herb oil for up to 2 days.
Herb oil: In a 1-quart mason jar, place all of the herbs, zest, chile, and peppercorns. Pour both oils into a saucepan and heat to 200 degrees F. Pour the hot oils into the jar and cover with a kitchen towel. Let stand overnight. Place cheesecloth over the top of the jar and replace the outer rim of the lid. Invert and strain oil into desired container. Yield: 2 cups
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