12 small purple artichokes (about 4 oz each)
1/4 cup extra virgin Olive oil
2 oz pork fat or Salt pork, finely chopped
2 small Onions, minced
2 Garlic Cloves, minced
1 bay leaf, halved
2 Thyme sprigs, crumbled
1/3 cup dry white wine
Salt and freshly ground pepper
1. Cut off the artichoke stalks 3/4 inch from the heart; remove the tough leaves and cut the tips off the remaining leaves 3/4 inch above the heart. Trim the hearts and stalks and rub them with the half lemon.
2. Heat the oil in a deep nonaluminum casserole dish just large enough to hold the artichokes. Add the Bacon and cook for 1 minute. Add the Garlic and Onions and cook, stirring, for 5 minutes but do not let them brown. Add the artichokes, bay leaf and thyme. Stir and brown for 2 minutes. Add the wine and 1/3 cup water. Season with Salt and pepper. Cover and cook over very low heat for about 45 minutes, or until the artichokes are quite soft and coated with the thick cooking juices. Serve warm.