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Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Artichoke - to Cook or to Flower?

Oh dear.  Who's been a slack blogger eh?!  Well, I won't go into my excuses (I am sure I could come up with quite a few entertaining ones but I will spare you.) I will say that life has been a bit tricky lately. But I'm back. And wondering what to do with this artichoke that I've managed to grow.
Once, many moons ago, I decided to attempt to cook an artichoke. I recall that it was a big fat pain in the bottom that wasted way too much time. And it didn't even taste good. All I got was a measley nibble of artichoke flesh to suck on. I vowed that I would never again waste my life on an artichoke unless it came in a can. Or marinated in the deli section of the supermarket. So I'm not sure what possessed me to purchase this plant at the Melbourne Garden Show earlier this year.

The fellow who sold it to me made a point of asking whether I was planting it purely for ornamental purposes. And I lied. Because he looked like he was going to snatch the thing out of my hands if I wasn't prepared to eat it.  And he seemed mighty relieved with my lie. He told me a whole bunch of people had been buying them just for the flowers and that artichokes were truly delicious. And then he went into a lot of tediousness about peeling and searching for fuzzy hearts and olive oil and some other stuff that I pretended to listen to.

But I don't think any artichoke on this tree is destined for the pot. Not this year anyway.








14 comments:

  1. we tried them and didn't like them..so i would enjoy the pretty flowers and that would be that

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  2. Yeah, grew lots of them...too many, and they were full of earwigs...they just got tossed.

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  3. I know they are gourmet and all but I am not that big a fan. The best way I have had them is boiled and then stirred through some pasta but I'm not sure they are worth the bother. They are gorgeous to look at though.

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  4. We went through a phase of eating them frequently as I had a really prolific plant. The main thing about them I found is the time involved to prepare and cook them. They take quite a long time to soak/boil up, plus I made Hollandaise sauce each time, although I know some folk just have garlic butter etc. The bees do love the flowers though :-)

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  5. Well a least it looks so pretty.

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  6. Cook it!!! I do agree they can be quite bland when boiled and you don't seem to get much veg bang for your buck when you've chopped off all the inedible outer leaves, but they are delicious cooked in olive oil and mashed over toast, or cooked in risotto, or with a tossed through pasta, or char grilled... just don't boil them!

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  7. Yep, I agree. In my opinion, Artichokes are at best OK. A lot of fuss, but a poor return for all the effort. The hearts are "not bad" but each one is very tiny, with a strong tendency to go grey! Better as ornamental plants in my opinion. P.S. Did anyone else mention the flatulence that Artichokes induce..?

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    Replies
    1. Isn't that Jerusalem Artichokes?... not this sort.

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  8. Have started some from seed this year and cut a few chokes to cook.Left some of the stem on and just put them in with other simmering veg.Ate them whole with butter and lemon juice.The bottom(heart)section and stem part were soft and delicious.After a chew of the crown part you can just spit out what remains.

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  9. They are so pretty! Ms Bek is a bit of an artichoke queen in case you DO feel like eating. But they are so pretty.

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  10. I love artichokes as they remind me of dinner at my grandparents. I steam them and eat with garlic butter. I just break off each leaf, dip and eat the nub at the end until you get down to the heart. Totally brings me back to being a little kid sitting at the dining table with my grandparents. A lot of work, but worth it for the memories!

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  11. I'm just glad I'm not the only one who pretends to listen to things.

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  12. I love artichokes! ...when someone else prepares them. I am with you...they have wonderful flowers.

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