Artichokes… No Joke!
Finally it’s artichoke season! This flowery veggie is one of my faves for many reasons. Besides being delicious and fun to eat, this super food is packed with health benefits. As it turns out artichoke hearts have more antioxidants than blueberries and even cranberries. Plus they have more fiber than lima beans and even prunes! I never would have guessed that. In addition, they aid our digestive system, liver, cholesterol levels, and studies show they help prevent certain cancers. Yes, please!
Steaming artichokes is incredibly simple and so are most of the dips that go with them. I’ve included below a lemon herb butter sauce that is so, so good. If you have a great sauce recipe please share in the comments!
• 4 large artichokes
• Salt and black pepper
• 1 lemon, halved
• 4 Tbs butter
• 1 small garlic clove, minced
• ½ tsp of dried oregano, basil, and thyme
• 1 Tbs of fresh lemon juice
1. Remove the stems from each artichoke. Cut up to 1” off the top. Using scissors, snip the prickly brown thorns from each leaf.
2. Rinse with water.
3. Place the artichokes on a steaming basket in a pot with about 2 inches of water. Season with salt and pepper. Once the water is at a boil, bring the heat down to low-medium. Cover the pot and allow the chokes to simmer for about 30 minutes. When you can easily poke through the stem with a knife, they’re ready.
While you’re waiting for the artichokes to steam, prepare your dip!
Once your butter has melted in a small saucepan, remove it from the heat and whisk in the herbs, garlic and lemon juice. Salt and pepper to your preference.
Just in case you haven’t had the whole artichoke before, this is how you devour it: Pluck each petal from the base and dip the meaty end into the sauce. Pull the petal through your teeth to scrape off the pulpy goodness. You don’t want to bite into and chew the hard leaf.
It’s so good!
The heart is the best part, in my opinion! Once you get there, spoon out the fuzzy hairs at the center of the base — those are not good to eat. The meat around it is where it’s at! Enjoy!!!