I found some very small fresh artichokes in my "etnic" foodshop, our supermarkets don't carry these. Their "bulb" is about a handfull, so much smaller than the fullgrown ones. There's much less waist in preparing these than the big ones too. It's a 2 persons recipe, I used only 4 artichokes, that's more than enough.
Start by cutting a lemon in two. One half serves to rub immediately on the fresh cuts you make in artichokes. Squeeze the juice out of the other half in a bowl of water. This lemon water will keep the prepared chunks from turning all brown.
Cut at least 1/3th from the top of the bulbs and throw it away. The green artichoke will now show some nice purple colored leaves in the core.
Peel a number of the outer leaves so everything now looks fresh and new on the whole bulb. Use a very sharp paring knife to trim the bottom part and peel the thin stalk. Do keep the stalks on! Now cut from top to bottom through the stalks and again to quarter them. There may be a very little hay or beard or whatever you call it inside the core. You need to cut that out. Cut each quarter again from top to bottom another 2 times. You now have thin slices of artichokes. Put them in the lemon water asap.
You can blanch these small artichokes, they are even eaten raw in salads. I chose to fry them in a pan with olive oil on low fire, together with 4 unpeeled cloves of garlic. The artichokes may take a while to soften. Sprinkle with lemon juice. I made this the day before and stored them in the fridge.
Start cooking the pasta, I used a ribbon pasta but any one you like will do perfectly.
In a pan with olive oil, fry some very thinly sliced halved red onion and equally very thinly sliced bacon. Do use a low fire and let it all fry a long time. Add a pinch of dried oregano. Bacon and oregano is a match from heaven! Also, add a tbsp of fresh chopped oregano and black pepper. When the onion and bacon is done, add a dash of white wine, let the alcohol evaporate and add 2 tbsp (or more if needed) of the cooking water of the pasta. Add a tbsp of good butter, let cook untill it forms an emulsion with the rest of the liquid. Add pasta and fold through the artichoke preparation.
Plate, add parmezan cheese, a few turns of black pepper, drizzle of olive oil.
One of the best tasting pasta dishes I ever put together. (Click on the image to enlarge)