In certain respects, the artichoke might be regarded as the vegetable equivalent of lobster. It's somewhat labor-intensive eating, but well worth the effort. The artichoke can be served whole or trimmed down to the heart, which, like the lobster's tail, is often considered the tastiest morsel. Artichokes are harvested year round. The crop peaks in the spring--March through May--and again, to a lesser extent, in October.
Winter — Spring
- Artichoke Stew with Mushrooms
- Pesto Pizza with Crabmeat and Artichoke Hearts
- Warm Artichokes and Bacon over Dandelion Greens
- Grilled Artichoke Hearts
- Artichokes with Butter Sauce
- Baked Artichokes with Crab Stuffing
- Cheesy Artichoke Casserole
- Artichoke Pasta Salad
- Hot Spinach and Artichoke Dip
- Grilled Artichokes with Herbed Goat Cheese
Dips for artichokes include Hollandaise sauce, plain yogurt blended with Dijon mustard, mayonnaise, light mayonnaise or mayonnaise blended with lemon juice.
For easy stuffed artichokes, spread the leaves (after cooked and cooled). Remove center leaves and scoop out choke. Fill with your favorite chicken or seafood salad.
An artichoke is Actually a thistle and a member of the sunflower family. The artichoke itself is a flower bud or immature flower head. The tender bases of the petals and the fleshy heart to which the petals are connected are the edible portions.
Artichokes originated in Sicily and were brought by the French to Louisiana and by Spaniards to California.
Always considered a delicacy, artichokes were popularized by Catherine d'Medici who was married at age 14 to Henry II of France. She was regarded with disdain due to her notorious artichoke appetite in an era when artichokes were a famed aphrodisiac.
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