Focus on Fresh

Artichokes are one of those things that can be intimidating if you don’t have experience with ‘em. But artichokes are not only delicious and really good for you, they’re also totally fun to eat.

To prepare:

1)Choose artichokes that are heavy for their size with tight leaves.

2)Slice off about ½ inch of the top – the little stickers aren’t bad but can be irritating.

3)Cut off the bottom of the stem; leave some stem as it’s good too.

4)Rinse your chokes under running water and drain.

5)To cook, you can boil them gently till tender – anywhere from 25 to 45 minutes, as the bigger the choke the longer it takes. You can also microwave them; turn them upside down in a microwave safe dish with about 2 Tb. water per choke, cover and vent, then cook on high for 8-12 minutes or till the outer leaves come off easily.

6)EAT! Dip the fat ends of the leaves in mayonnaise flavored with herbs or vinegar, melted butter with lemon, or whatever sauce you like. When you get to the inside, discard the fuzzy part (the choke) and dig into the artichoke heart. This is super fun food for kids and SO good!

- Mary White,

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