- Zest the lemon and set zest aside. Cut lemon in half and set aside one half for the next step. Cut the other half into thin slices for garnish.
- Use a sharp knife to cut the bases and the top third of the artichokes. Remove the outer leaves at the bottom and using scissors, snip off the tips of the other leaves, which can be thorny. Rub the artichokes with the lemon half, and then squeeze its juice and set aside.
- Remove chokes in the centre of artichokes using a small spoon. Sprinkle with squeezed lemon juice and close leaves around cores.
- In a large saucepan of boiling salted water, cook artichokes for about 20 minutes, or until tender. Drain and cool.
- In the meantime, combine salad dressing, tuna, olives, dried tomatoes, onion, oregano, and lemon zest in a small bowl. Season with pepper to taste.
- Fill the centre of each artichoke with tuna mixture. Decorate with a few oregano leaves and a thin slice of lemon.
- Accompany with red pepper strips and mini-pitas. Serve as a starter or a light meal.
- To eat the artichoke, pull off leaves one at a time, garnish with a bit of the tuna mixture, and pull between your teeth to scrape off the soft pulp. Eat the artichoke heart with a knife and fork.
VARIATION : Use the tuna mixture in sandwiches or salads.
CHEF'S SECRET : To prevent artichokes from blackening while cooking, cover with lids that are smaller than the saucepan they're being cooked in to keep them completely submerged in the water.