Use a candy thermometer and fry in small batches to ensure your fry oil remains at a consistent temperature.
Inspired by Tori Avey's Fried Artichokes recipe.
For the Artichokes
5 artichokes (large)
Canola Oil (for frying) - enough to fill an enamel cast-iron dutch oven with 1 inch of oil
Bowl of lemon-water
For the Lemon Aioli
1/2 cup mayonnaise
2 Tsps lemon juice
1. Prepare a large bowl of ice water. Add two lemons' worth of juice (about 1/4 cup).
2. Rinse your artichokes under cold water. Peel and snap off outer 5-6 layers of leaves until you reach fresh, soft inner leaves that have a bit of white showing at the base.
3. Cut off about an inch of the stem, and peel remaining outer skin from stem. Rub the peeled stem with fresh lemon to prevent browning. With a sharp knife, cut the body of the choke in half horizontally, revealing a cross-section of leaves. Ensure that the thorny tops of the artichoke leaves are completely removed.
4. Next, cut the choke in half lengthwise. Using a small pairing knife, scoop out the fuzzy spines and purple leaves from each artichoke half. Rub the heart with lemon, then place it in a the bowl of lemon water. Repeat process with the other remaining artichokes.
5. When ready to cook, remove the artichoke halves from the lemon water. Fill a large pot with 2 inches of water. Place a steamer basket inside the pot and bring water to a boil. Place the cleaned artichoke halves into the steamer basket and cover the pot with a lid. Steam artichokes for 15-20 minutes until soft and you can easily insert a knife into the stem.
6. Remove the steamed artichoke halves onto a layer of paper towels and let them drain. Heat 1 inch of olive oil to 375 degrees. We recommend that you use a candy or frying thermometer for best results.
7. While the canola oil is heating, sprinkle the artichoke halves with sea salt and pepper, making sure to sprinkle inside the layers of leaves as well. Using tongs, place the artichokes gently into the heated oil and let them fry for about 7-10 minute, turning artichokes once halfway through cooking. When artichokes are golden brown and the leaves are crisp, remove and drain on a paper towel lined plate
8. Make the aioli by mixing mayonnaise and lemon. Season aioli to taste, and lightly drizzle lemon aioli on the fried artichokes.