Cynara Scolymus, or The Artichoke Meal

Ever since I brought back a bottle of Cynar from Italy, I’ve been itching to do an artichoke themed meal (like the pistachio meal from a few months ago). Cynar, is a bitter, usually mixed with white wine or prosecco, and club soda to make a spritz. The thing about Cynar that usually throws people (including myself) for a loop, is that its main ingredient is artichoke. Who would think to make a cocktail with artichoke undertones?? It’s the antithesis of the giggly appletinis and cosmos; it is the less dainty cocktail, givin’ it to you straight. Supposedly, the fact that it contains artichoke also makes it a good digéstif, so it’s herbal remedy as well as alcoholic drink! It comes in a bottle with a fun retro label, where the artichoke shoots up, looking like a valiant superhero of a thistle (by day, an ordinary green, by night, the life of the party).  When my Italian family saw that I’d purchased it, they joked that I’d reached the bottom rungs of alcoholism. And, I guess with its 33% proof, they had a point.

Still, now that I have a whole bottle, I am anxious to use it. And, since artichokes are in season, an artichoke meal seems like just the way to do it.  

Tentative menu for the night:
Cynar Spritz with Orange Slice
Artichoke and Mushroom Crostini: http://www.epicurious.com/recipes/food/views/Mushroom-Saute-with-Goat-Cheese-Crostini-10309
Artichoke and Orange Salad: http://www.epicurious.com/recipes/food/views/Artichoke-and-Orange-Salad-5229

Roasted Snapper (kırlangıç ​​balığı)  with Artichokes and Aioli:
http://www.epicurious.com/recipes/food/views/Whole-Roasted-Snapper-with-Artichokes-and-Aioli-235571

and for dessert........................... I have to say that I’ve drawn a blank and am open to suggestions.

Artichoke overkill you say?? Don’t be so cynara-ky!

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