Sunday, July 19, 2009

How to Prepare Fresh Artichokes

What better way to spend a rainy Sunday than to sit in your dry kitchen, eating fresh artichokes? That is exactly what I did today. Fresh artichokes are so easy to prepare and are such a treat.

You first start by trimming off the bottom stem, leaving about ½ inch. Next, pull off any loose leaves around the bottom. You’ll also want to snip off any thorny tops on the petals. I was pretty lucky with this one as there were only a few. One fairly important step that I forgot today is to slice off a bit of the top of the artichoke. Not too much, but just flatten the top rounded part. When ready to cook, I first rub with lemon before putting into water.
There are several ways to cook, with steaming being popular. My favorite way, however, is to put the artichoke in a large pot, add a little water, cover, and boil for 30-35 minutes.
The artichoke is ready to eat when you can easily insert a knife in the bottom.
Your choice of dip is a matter of personal preference. While herb butter or garlic mayonnaise are popular choices, I like mine best with a simple vinaigrette.
Make sure you have a bowl or plate for the discarded petals. Getting to the choke is almost like finding a hidden treasure.I'm not very graceful at this stage, but removing the hairs from the center and getting to that tender choke is well worth the effort. Even if the effort is a bit clumsy.


Lisa said...

Dear God, Amy!! What a drop dead gorgeous madly insane fantastically freaking amazing thing to do on a Sunday. That artichoke brought a little tear to my eye. xo

Amy J said...

Thanks Lisa :-) It's sad I had to post it as a reminder to cut the top off!

kate said...

Great post, makes me hungry, i love artichokes, i like them with breadcrumbs and garlic with lots of butter!!! have you ever gone to the rest at Nordstrums in tampa, they make them wonderfully....thanks again

gina said...

Hi Amy , I love artichokes one of my favorite dishes is
Dark tuna
lightly sauteed onions
green olives
s & p
pinch of oregano and basil
Olive oil mix
and serve on
toasted chibatta bread

Amy J said...

Hi Gina, thanks for sharing that recipe! I can't have tuna but could substitute with chicken. Sounds amazing!

Kate, next time I'm in Tampa, I'm definintly going to have to stop in to Nordstrums for those chokes! Thanks for the tip! :-)