Okay, this is not at all forest epicure or ecologically themed, but I wondered how to go about preparing artichokes and have just embraced the process this year.
Thought I’d share. Enjoy!
Nice artichokes. Clean, dense tips, tight around centre.
Cut off base of stem leaving at least one inch from flower base.
Pull off lower petals accordingly.
Cut off petal tips.
Cut off dense flower tips with a sharp knife.
Get steaming water ready and up to a boil in a very large pot with a tight-fitting lid, a steaming tray, a slice of lemon, a bay leaf and a clove of garlic.
Rinse outside well, flower tips down to keep inside of flower clean.
Rinse the inside of the flower and stretch the petals open a bit.
Place in steamer once water is boiling, tips down. Put on the lid.
Start to make the dip. Mayonnaise (Olive oil), Balsamic vinegar, Dijon mustard.
Add salt and pepper to dip. I add salt in a nice thin layer on the top after blending well.
Artichokes should be done after steaming for 15 minutes, or until the lower petals pull off easily and flesh can be easily stripped from the petal base with your teeth.
I forgot to take photos of the eating process because I was too busy eating.
Eat the artichoke by pulling each petal off the flower, dipping it, and stripping the flesh off of the petal with your teeth. As you get closer to the centre of the flower, you should be able to eat more of the petal, closer to the tip.
This is the end of the meal in this photo. This here is the heart. Sometimes the hairs above the heart are too hard and prickly to eat, so scoop them out where they meet the meat of the stem. These particular artichoke centre hairs were soft so we ate them. You can eat the whole heart of the ‘handle’ (stem) too. The ‘heart’ is the base of the flower, it looks like a bowl, leading into the stem. It is very sweet and rich.
May the forest be with you.