People are often stymied by artichokes. How do you prepare them? How do you eat them? And so they get left on the shelf. It’s a pity because they’re incredibly easy to cook and make for a delicious, low calorie Spring and early Summer treat that’s packed with vitamins C, K and Folate. They also have a ton of fiber but as you’ll see in our video “art of the Artichoke” which shows you how to cook and get to the heart of the matter to eat them, much of that fiber is left behind on the plate. When fresh artichokes aren’t available, you can buy the hearts frozen or canned. If you buy canned for cooking, be sure to get the ones packed in water, not oil or vinegar. These are a classic Italian antipasto and not meant for cooking. Unlike their raw or frozen siblings, they are perfect eaten as is.
In Season: Although the artichoke is available year-round in California, it is at it’s peak elsewhere from March through May.
How To Buy: Look for artichokes that feel heavy and firm. They should have a healthy green color (although some varietals are tinged with purple) and the leaves should be tight and compact. Pass on any whose leaves look dry and wrinkled.
Storage: Trim the stem of the artichoke and spritz the fresh stem with a little water, then store in an airtight bag for up to a week. However, the sooner you eat them the fresher they will taste!