Cut 1/4 inch off the top of each artichoke and cut the bottom stem off to make flat on bottom. Use fingers to pull-open leaves and make room for stuffing, without tearing leaves off. Wash artichokes with cold water and set aside.
Put breadcrumbs and parmesian cheese in a large bowl.
Chop onion and put in frying pan with olive oil. Fry onions on medium-high for about 5 minutes. Add onions with olive oil to the breadcrumbs mixture.
Mince garlic and add to breadcrumb mixture.
Chop fresh parsley and add to mixture.
Add pinch of salt. Mix all ingredients well.
On each artichoke, pull 2 rows of leaves back from the outside, and press breadcrumb mixture inside, all the way around.
Place 4 artichokes in a large pot, or 2 each in 2 pots. Add 1 inch of water to bottom of pot. Add 1 drop of olive oil to water.
Cook on high until boiling.
Reduce to medium high and cover with lid. Cook for 2 hours.
Since water will evaporate, you must check the water level every 1/2 hour and add a little more if needed to avoid burning the artichokes.
To check if they are cooked enough, try to pull a leaf out of the artichoke. If it comes out easily they are ready. If you need to tug the leaf too much to get it out, they are not ready.
When ready, turn off heat and serve as a side dish for dinner or a tasty lunch.
To eat, start from the outside. Pull each leaf and eat the bottom of each leaf. When you get to the transluscent leaves, discard them, and discard the hair-like substance right on top of the bottom artichoke heart. The artichoke heart is tasty and should be eaten too. Enjoy!!!