Stop. Artichoke Time!

My husband and I were checking out at the store last weekend when I noticed that a customer in front of us was buying a bag artichokes.  We were already in the process of putting our groceries onto the conveyor belt, but I did what any reasonable artichoke lover would do.  I stopped loading the groceries, shouted “Stop. Artichoke time!” to my husband by way of explanation, and took off across the store to get a bag.

Artichokes are my favorite vegetable and would probably make my top ten favorite foods list.  That’s saying a lot for a vegetable since depending on my mood (sweet or savory), my list is headed by black forest whipped cream cake or king crab.  Aren’t artichokes beautiful?

Often, for the two of us, Jaime and I will make two extra large artichokes, and eat them over two meals.  We will each eat half an artichoke hot for dinner the evening we prepare them, and half chilled for dinner the following evening.

For artichokes two ways — hot and chilled — for two, I used:

  • 2 Artichokes
  • For hot, melted butter (if serving hot)
  • For chilled, 2 Tablespoons mayonnaise, 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground lemon pepper, and 2 slices of lemon

Artichokes can look a bit intimidating with their thorns and choke, but they are actually pretty easy to prepare.  First, I washed the artichokes with cold water.  Lots of stuff can get caught up in the leaves so it is important to be thorough.  I washed the artichokes under running water, then submerged them and swished them around in a bowl of water for a bit, and then rinsed them under running water again.

Second, I squeezed a half of lemon into a bowl of (clean) cold water and placed my washed artichokes in the bowl.  Dipping them in the lemon water (and keeping them there when you are not trimming them helps keep them from discoloring.)

Third, I pulled off the leaves on the stem.

I cut off the top 2 inches or so of each artichoke and about 1/4 inch of the stem.

I then used kitchen shears to cut off the remaining tops of the leaves.

I then cut the artichokes in half and rubbed the cut sides with the juiced lemon half.

At this point you can scrap out the purple leaves and choke from the center of the artichokes or you can do so after the artichokes are cooked, which I find a bit easier.

I placed the trimmed artichokes face down in a large microwave safe dish, added about 1 inch of water, and cooked in the microwave on high for about 12 minutes.  (The artichokes are done when they are soft when pierced with a fork.)

The artichokes can be eaten hot with butter or chilled with a slice of fresh lemon, a dollop of mayonnaise, and freshly ground lemon pepper.

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Stop. Artichoke Time! — 4 Comments

  1. I love artichokes and used to have them fairly regularly growing up. Which is why I was so surprised to find out my fiance had never had them, at least apart from artichoke hearts in salads. We don’t have them all the time, but I have now made him a fan.

    And just letting you know, I’m Miss Ariel from weddingbee!

    • Same here! Thanks for stopping by. Looking forward to seeing more of your wedding projects on your blog (esp. the candy table!).

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