If you asked me six years ago what artichokes were, I would show you a picture of this:
I had no idea what a freshly picked artichoke looked like nor did I know that there were several ways to prepare and eat it other than from the glass jar of oil and vinegar.
One day my husband told me that he wanted to attend a lesson on vegetable preparation and asked if I wanted to join him. I thought, “what a waste of money—
Lesson 1 – Wash.
Lesson 2 – Peel
Lesson 3 – Cut
Isn’t preparing vegetables straight forward?”
I was glad he wanted to attend but I politely declined his offer as I didn’t want to die of boredom nor did I want to spend money for someone to tell me how to peel and cut vegetables.
FOOD PREP CLASS
My husband came home after the lesson with new knives. Ha! I see. They just wanted to sell you knives. It was a trap! Without telling him that he fell into their knife-selling trap, I asked him, “What do you need those new knives for?”
First he explained why they were superior to the ones that we had and that each one had a specific purpose. He held up two of them and said, “For example, these are for prepping artichokes.”
I found myself at a loss for words because he mentioned a vegetable that I had only ever seen in a jar. The next day, I looked up the translation for artichokes (carciofi) and went to the grocery store to buy them. If I hadn’t seen the word “carciofi” written next to these vegetables, I would have never guessed them to be artichokes. They were huge and looked like budding flowers! Some were also pointy and dangerous with thorns! “How do they get them in the jar?” – I wondered.
When I came home, I stared at these foreign vegetables and tried my hardest to imagine how to prep and cut them. If only I had attended that lesson that my husband went to. I tucked my pride away and I asked my husband to show me, with the use of his new knives, how to cut and prepare artichokes.
The way I cook them is very simple and works great as a side dish. If you want to get a little more creative, here is a recipe for stuffed artichokes:
HEALTH BENEFITS FROM EATING ARTICHOKES
– Aids kidney function
-Low in calories
– high in fibre
– helps lower LDL cholesterol
– recommended for people with diabetes, hypertension, cellulite and liver problems
If you want to get serious about taking in all these health benefits that artichokes have to offer, save the leaves that you cut away and boil them. Use the mineral salt-rich water for future meals like soups or broths.
Attention Future Mammas – Apparently it’s advised not to eat artichokes while breastfeeding as it can interfere with your milk supply. Double check with your doc.
Lastly, don’t wait to try these recipes because when April is over, artichoke season is over.