Much-loved in Italy and France, fried cardoons are among author Mireille Johnston's favorite dishes.
- 2 1⁄2 lb. cardoons
- Juice of 3 lemons
- 3 eggs
- 1 1⁄2 cups flour
- Vegetable oil
Wash cardoons; remove and discard outer stalks. Trim thorns and stringy fibers. Cut cardoons into 2" pieces; place in a pot of salted water with lemon juice. Bring to a simmer over medium-high heat and cook until cardoons are tender, about 30 minutes. Drain, cool, and dry with paper towels.
Beat eggs. Place flour in a separate bowl, add cardoons, and toss. Heat 1" oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Dip a few in eggs, then drop into hot oil. Fry in batches until golden, about 6 minutes; drain. Sprinkle with parmigiano-reggiano.