Monday, February 21, 2011


Artichokes are one of my all time favorites, I grew up eating them and I love them. Every time I make them I think of my Mom. My Stud Muffin never ate one until he met me. As a matter of fact there was a lot of real food he never was given the opportunity to eat. Why, he had never tasted roasted chestnuts, real Italian, Mexican or Chinese food. I cringe when he tells me that the big highlight on Sunday was eating Chef Boyardee pizza, made from the BOX. I'm telling you that would not fly in my house, nor my Mom's. Sorry MIL, but he was not very well rounded in the food category. I am lucky because he will try anything. He has gotten a tad bit spoiled through the years from my cooking. Back to the artichoke I think it is a misunderstood vegetable or should I say edible flower bud. I don't want to scare you away, but it is so tasty, and it is good for you, too. It is low in calories and high in fiber. It's unusual to look at and fun to eat. Please give it a try.


  • 4 artichokes
  • 1 fresh garlic bulb
  • crushed red pepper, optional
  • salt, optional
Choose nice firm artichokes that are not turning brown or shriveling. Cut off the stems even with the bottom of the artichokes. Turn artichoke cut stem side up and cover with hands overlapping to press down into counter. They are tough and you have to lean your weight into it. Work it around like that a little, it will spread out the leaves for seasoning and cooking.

Peel and slice thin one garlic clove (two if small cloves) per artichoke. To remove skin off of clove easily: Separate clove for garlic bulb and place on the cutting board. Press down on clove with a flat sandwich spreader or a wide knife (but be careful). When you hear a light pop the skin has separated and will easily peel away. Poke slices of garlic randomly between the leaves of the artichoke, pressing towards the heart. Be careful, there are pricklies on the ends of each leaf. You do not need to cut these off, once they are cooked it is tender. Trust me, I have never been injured by an artichoke. Add a sprinkle of crushed red pepper at this time if you wish.

Place all four artichokes into a large 8 qt. pot filled halfway with lightly salted water. Bring water to a boil then turn down heat so that the water remains at a low simmer. Cover pot and cook for 1 hour.

To test for tenderness pull out a leaf. If it comes away from the artichoke easily, they are ready to eat.

To eat artichokes, pull off individual leaves and scrape leaf between teeth to remove the soft pulp near the bottom of the leaf. I love this part, it may seem odd if you have never eaten one. Then discard the leaf. As you get near the center, the leaves become more tender and a greater portion of each leaf is edible. When you are near the center, remove any remaining leaves, and you'll see a fuzzy thing called a choke. It looks like little thin prickles. Do not eat this part it is not edible. Scrape it off with a knife or spoon and discard. Under the choke is the heart which is the best part of the artichoke, cut it into pieces and enjoy!

The big difference you will see in my recipe is that I cook them longer than most and it is not served with a dipping sauce. Mine are so tender they just fall apart, I hate a tough artichoke. There is no need to dip it, it is best left plain. With my recipe you will get what I call the bonus bite every so often. A little slice of garlic on the leave, make sure you eat the garlic too.


  1. WoW! Thanks Debra -- the pictures are amazing, and thanks so much for posting pictures throughout the instructions - so we know what we are supposed to be looking at! Although it's "green" -- I'll have to try it one day!

  2. Thank you Deb for posting this...I have always wanted to make artichokes instead of buying them already cooked..I can not wait to try them. Yummy....

  3. Ilove steamed artichokes. My sig other had never had chokes or asparagus til he met me. Now, he is a Ho for artichokes. He has eaten alot of NEW foods thanks to me. And I love him for trying new foods. :)

  4. Deb, I love artichokes! But until you gave this recipe, I never cooked them long enough.
    I gave up and ordered them in a restaurant or brought them home cooked already.

  5. They are one of my all time favorites, I grew up eating these.

  6. Thanks for the great tutorial! I have, until now, always eaten them prepared by someone else. I can do this!