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April 18, 2010

Steamed Artichokes

When I walked into Whole Foods yesterday as soon as the sliding doors opened I was presented with a giant, overflowing pile of green artichokes. They are such a beautiful thistle. Yes, that's right- not a fruit, not a vegetable, not a flower, but a thistle. (I know this thanks to fellow blogger Phytophactor who is an academic botanist.)

Artichokes can be intimidating to someone who's never cooked them. They are prickly, rough and if you don't cut out the "choke" you will, well, choke. Thanks to my mother in-law, I have learned an easy and delicious way to prepare them.

2 whole artichokes
1 cup Italian seasoned breadcrumbs
1/2 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese
1Tablespoon salt
1Tablespoon olive oil

Special Equipment: steamer pot

Fill the steamer pot so the water just touches the bottom of the steamer basket. Salt the water and bring to a boil.

Cut the stem off the artichokes so they will sit flat. Gently spread open the petals. In a bowl, combine the breadcrumbs and Parmesan. Drizzle the tops of the artichokes with a little olive oil, be sure a little gets down in between the petals. Carefully sprinkle the breadcrumb mixture in between each petal, getting it down towards the bottom. Be CAREFUL, the tips of the petals are prickly! (you can also pre-trim all of the petal tips if you prefer to play it safe.) Place the artichokes in the steamer pot and steam for about 45 minutes, until soft. Remove and serve.

Not know how to actually eat these? Here are step-by-step instructions. Enjoy!


Christy said...

OMG, I can practically taste them. I saw some when I was grocery shopping today but bypassed them because I've never cooked them before. I think I'm going to have to go back for them tomorrow.

DevouringDC said...

they are fun to eat, like how edamame is. I think next time i will trim the petals first to save my fingers

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