Traci Des Jardins’ Baby Artichokes, Favas, and Arugula with Marinated Crescenza Cheese, as seen on Guy's Ranch Kitchen Season 5.
Recipe courtesy of Traci Des Jardins

Baby Artichokes, Favas, and Arugula with Marinated Crescenza Cheese

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  • Level: Intermediate
  • Total: 1 hr (includes cooling time)
  • Active: 45 min
  • Yield: 4 servings
The flavors of spring bring this delicious combination to life. It's a little labor intensive with the trimming of the artichokes and processing of the favas, but well worth it.



  1. Remove the basil leaves from the stems and separate the small leaves from the large ones, setting aside the small leaves for garnish. Finely mince the large leaves. Chop half of the Italian parsley, then reserve the remaining leaves for garnish. Combine the chopped basil, chopped parsley and 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil and mix well. Season with salt, then pour over the Crescenza on a plate. Set aside.
  2. Remove the tough outer leaves and chokes from the baby artichokes, trimming any of the dark green bitter parts away, and place them into water with the juice of the lemon.
  3. Preheat the pure olive oil in a large saute pan over medium-high heat. Quarter the artichokes and immediately add the saute pan, cooking them until they are golden brown, 4 to 5 minutes. Season well with salt and pepper. Place on a tray or plate and set aside at room temperature.
  4. Place the fava beans on a griddle or in a medium cast-iron pan over medium-high heat and blacken a little on both sides, about 5 minutes. Remove from the pan to a baking dish. Season with salt, allow to cool to the touch and then pop them out of their tough outer skins.
  5. Place the artichokes and favas in a mixing bowl. Add the arugula, reserved basil and parsley leaves. Dress with the balsamic, extra-virgin olive oil and the salt and pepper.
  6. Preheat a grill or griddle over medium-high heat.
  7. Brush the bread slices with 2 to 3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil and grill or griddle on both sides until toasted and golden brown, about 2 minutes per side. Slice in half on a diagonal.
  8. Evenly divide the cheese among 4 plates and place down one side with a generous amount of the herb oil. Place a mound of artichoke/fava bean salad down and garnish with the slices of grilled bread.