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Heat oil in a large pot or deep fryer over medium-high heat. Cut artichoke stems and trim off about 4 layers of the hard outer leaves. Cut the artichokes in half, and, using a spoon, remove the center ‘fluffy’ choke. Once the oil reaches 350°F, carefully place artichokes in hot oil (working in batches, if necessary). Fry artichokes for 15 minutes, or until deep golden and crisp. Remove fried artichoke from the oil and set it aside to drain on a wire rack. Season to taste with salt and pepper.
Heat oil (2 teaspoons) in a small skillet over medium-high heat. Once the oil is hot, add minced garlic and sauté until fragrant, about 1 minute. Transfer garlic and any residual oil to a medium bowl. Add mayonnaise, balsamic, lemon juice, and basil to the bowl with the garlic and whisk until blended.
Divide artichokes between plates or display them on a platter. Serve with aioli dip on the side and garnish with chopped basil and lemon wedges.
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