Over the last couple of weeks I’ve noticed a whole lot of repeats on my plate. And while I don’t mind the redundancy (yet) because I find them all DELICIOUS, I decided to make a conscious effort to do even more experimenting. And not just experiment, but become really knowledgeable in the process.
This means not just buying a veggie and playing guess work in the kitchen until something beautiful comes out, but really developing a consistency and confidence in food. So last night I began my “experimenting expertise” with artichokes. A kind of scary vegetable–i.e. perfect.
SimplyRecipes helped me out with a step by step that included using a paring knife to remove the prickly points of the leaves, removing the stem, rinsing in cold water to remove the bad stuff, boiling water 2 inches high on the artichoke (leaf points up), and boiling for 30-45 minutes until fork easily pokes bottom of the choke. Not so intimidating after all!
I seasoned the water with salt, a bay leaf, and a lemon wedge. I topped the artichoke with toasted pinenuts and in a small side container, poured olive oil, rosemary, and pepper for dipping my leaves in. Served next to a portabella sprouted wrap and a sweet potato mash left over from Easter and I was smiling.
Removing the choke to get to the heart was a little difficult and messy, but worth it. You just cut all the small pricklies out until there are none. I used a paring knife and it took me about 3 minutes.
I also learned that the stems are edible but bitter. You can bake or roast artichokes too by slicing them lengthwise and putting them in the oven for 30-45 minutes. Grilling is also an option (sure to try this summer) by steaming them first, marinating, slicing and grilling. Artichokes are obviously also good in dips, and to my surprise, can be slipped into casseroles.
To top it off, artichokes are:
- Very high in dietary fiber
- High in iron
- High in manganese and magnesium
- High in niacin
- High in phosphorus
- Very high in potassium
- High in vitamin B6
- Very high in vitamin C