Thursday, September 20, 2012

Challenge Week 1: The Artichoke


Ok, Artichokes are delicious (or at least we like Spinach and Artichoke Dip, right?). But when you see a fresh artichoke in the produce section, you might look at it. You might even pick one up. And you are likely thinking…

“How in the hell do you eat this?” You might flash back to the deep yellow-green hearts you see in dip. You might think “Maybe it’s under the petals?” and attempt to pull a leaf back…and get stabbed by a thorn. Finally, you probably throw the artichoke down and say “SCREW IT! I’ll get some dip at freaking Chilis!” and bail.

Not this week, Artichoke. Not this week.


I found this website after a lot of strenuous researching. (Ok…first hit when I searched “How to cook an artichoke”)

I read it over before I went to the grocery store this week.

I picked a smaller artichoke and some garlic and lemon juice.

Last night, I attempted to cook “the thorny beast” as I will now refer to it.

Following the instructions, I used a pair of kitchen scissors to cut off the thorns that were racking up “pokes”. Pretty easy. Then I tried to cut off the top 3/4 inch. My veggie knife would NOT chop the top off. I even tried a serrated knife. I ended up chopping/sawing/angrily attempting to murder the top 3/4 inches of this thorny beast. It wasn’t pretty but I did eventually get it done!

Now, I don’t have a steaming bowl…so I decided to say screw it! I put the thorny beast in my steamer. I put lemon juice, a chopped glove of garlic and some lemon juice in the water tray that goes underneath the artichoke and set it for 30 minutes. I checked it after twenty and the leaves pealed off perfectly.

I made some basic tsatziki sauce using organic plain yogurt, lemon juice, salt, pepper, dill, cucumber, and garlic. I loved the sauce with the thorny beast. Doc was indifferent. Little Bird was creeped out by the cucumber chunks in it.

That said, we couldn’t finish it. I served it as an appetizer in case it went horrifically in this cooking attempt. I think it could almost be a meal in itself. I’d love to do a thorny beast with some stuffed grape leaves as a great vegetarian meal at some point.

Week 1: Artichoke – SLAIN!

Next week. Ugh….Leeks.

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