Wild About Artichokes?

Wild About Artichokes?

Around my household, we love artichokes! We love them grilled, sautéed with melted butter and garlic, steamed, in salad’s, dips, etc. The possibilities are endless with this gorgeous vegetable, not to mention the heart and its entire splendor! Right now, these beauties are ripe for the picking and eating. In Northern, California there is no better place to purchase the ultimate artichoke than from Frog Hollow Farms in Brentwood (www.froghollow.com). Although most specialty/high end grocers carry this beautiful produce, there is always online shopping available if you’re unable to find it. At least twice a week my family and I stop off and pick-up a few and yes we are wild about our artichokes!

Cooking an Artichoke

Prep time: 5 minutes

  1. If the artichoke has thorns on the end of the leaves, take kitchen scissors and cut off the tips. This is only for aesthetics, for the thorns soften with cooking time.
  2. Slice ¾ inch to an inch off the top of the artichoke.
  3. Pull off the smaller leaves at base and on stem.
  4. Cut off any excess stem (the stem tends to be bitter).
  5. Rinse artichoke in cold running water; letting water get under the leaves and shake off the excess water.
  6. I love to steam artichokes in a large pot with only a couple inches of water and add a garlic clove plus some lemon. Bring the water to a boil and then reduce to a simmer for 25 to 30 minutes. You know your artichoke is done when the leaves come out or can be pulled off effortlessly.
  7. Enjoy with melted butter, chopped up garlic, Fleur de Sel added, and some mayonnaise (homemade is best). Yummy!!!

Eating an Artichoke

Artichokes may be eaten hot or cold, although my personal preference is hot. Pull off outer petals one at a time until the Holy Grail – “the heart”- appears. The best way to remove the heart is to run a sharp small knife in a circular motion taking out excess “fuzz” with a spoon; slice and enjoy the best part of the artichoke experience. As my husband would say, I always go straight for the heart . . . .

See my recipes for a simple and very tasty artichoke dip.

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