Artichoke Appetizer

1 large globe artichoke
1 teaspoon salad oil
1 bay leaf
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 package (3 oz) cream cheese
1/2 teaspoon dry onion soup mix (or to taste)
2 tablespoons milk (more or less)
1/4 pound salad shrimp (not canned)

Cut the stem off even with the base of the artichoke; remove small leaves at base and any discolored leaves.

Using a sharp knife, cut top from artichoke, trim points from remaining outer leaves (brushing cut surfaces with lemon juice will prevent discoloration). Place artichoke in large pan of water; add oil, bay leaf and salt to water. Bring to a boil, reduce heat and simmer approximately 30 minutes or until a leaf pulls out easily from center and the base is tender when pierced with a knife.

Remove artichoke and cool. Remove leaves, using leaves for the appetizer, which are firm to handle and have a good edible portion on the ends.

Blend cream cheese with soup mix and enough milk to make a smooth paste. Spread cream cheese on base of each leaf. Garnish with a salad shrimp and sprinkle of paprika. Arrange leaves in a sunflower pattern on serving plate.

NOTE: Cream cheese mix makes great Ham Roll Ups. Spread a thin slice of ham with cream cheese mix, place a sweet pickle gherkin or spear on one side of ham and roll ham around pickle. Slice into bite size pieces and spear with a toothpick.

Makes approximately 18 appetizers.

Recipe is shared by Renae Williams from Pleasant Grove.

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