Artichokes Globe

Identification: Artichokes are the unopened or immature flowers of a type of this-tle.They vary in size and coloration but are usually round to somewhat elongated, colored light to medium green, sometimes with purple tints. Related Varieties: Baby artichokes are not actually babies but come from a different place on the plant and are at their full size. Especially young baby artichokes may be tender enough to eat whole, with little trimming except for removing the top points of the leaves.

Evaluation: Look for compact, tight leaves; heavy for size; few or no brown blemishes.

Preparation: Wash. Cut 1 inch (2-3 cm) off tops. Cut off stem and lower leaves. Scrape out choke (fuzzy center) with melon ball cutter. (Remove choke before or

Figure 16.1

Trimming artichoke bottoms.

Figure 16.1

Trimming artichoke bottoms.

(a) Cut or break off the stem flush with the bottom of the artichoke, as shown.

(d) Cut off the remaining leaves above the base.
(b) Break off the outer leaves.
(e) With a paring knife, trim off the green outer peel to give the base a smooth, neat appearance.

(g) A trimmed artichoke bottom on the left; a trimmed whole artichoke on the right. Note that the points of the leaves have been cut off and the center choke removed.

(c) Alternatively, trim the outer leaves with a knife as shown, being careful not to cut into the base of the artichoke.

(f) With a ball cutter or tablespoon, scrape out the fuzzy choke.

Figure 16.2

To keep the cut stem end of an artichoke from darkening during steaming or boiling, tie a slice of lemon over the cut surface.

Figure 16.2

To keep the cut stem end of an artichoke from darkening during steaming or boiling, tie a slice of lemon over the cut surface.

after cooking.) Dip in lemon juice immediately. To prepare bottoms, see Figures 16.1 and 16.2.

Percentage Yield: 80% (whole, trimmed), 30% (bottoms only)

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