A good friend had some extra artichokes harvested from her garden recently, and bestowed the treasure on me. I love artichokes!
Everyone has their own way of preparing artichokes, but I like to take some time trimming an artichoke before I cook it so I can eat it as soon as it comes out of the pot. I start by putting enough water to cover the artichokes in a large heavy pot over high heat. I add about a tablespoon of apple cider vinegar (Bellewood Acres, Lynden) to keep the trimmed artichoke edges from turning brown.
While that’s coming to a boil, I cut the stem off, flush with the bottom of the artichoke. I remove the small lowest leaves–they’re usually a little tough. Next I cut off about half an inch off the top of the artichoke, more or less depending on how large the artichoke is. That will remove the spiky tips off the centermost leaves. I then use kitchen scissors to cut off the spiky tips of the rest of the leaves. Finally, I cut the artichokes in half vertically, and carefully cut just underneath the center “choke” to remove it. Don’t remove more of the choke than you need to because right under the choke is the “heart”, the most creamy and delicious part of the artichoke. Some don’t bother with the last step until after the artichoke has been cooked.
Drop the artichokes into the boiling water and let boil for about 10-15 minutes, testing with a sharp knife to see if the heart area is soft. Remove from the heat when done and drain.
That’s it! Eat the inside lower portion of the leaves by scraping them against your lower front teeth, and eat all of the soft heart. This website shows photos of the process, with some variations.
Artichokes are usually dipped in butter, mayonnaise, or some kind of sauce as they are eaten. Here’s a great locavore dip recipe my daughter Joan invented using fresh oregano from our herb garden.
- Prep Time:
- Cook Time:
- Ready In:
- 1/2 cup sour cream (Twin Brook Creamery, Lynden)
- 1 Tbsp apple cider vinegar (BelleWood Acres, Lynden)
- 1 tsp fresh oregano, finely chopped (home garden)
Mix all ingredients together.
Serve with boiled or steamed artichokes, as described above. Goes well with Locavore Basil Pesto over pasta (Bellingham Pasta).
Community Food Co-operative, Westerly and Cordata, Bellingham