November 25, 2006 3:46 AM
We have had artichokes growing in my backyard since I can remember. My parents never tried to cook them. But in May, I finally bit the bullet and put those delicious artichoke buds in a pressure cooker. The result was a more poignant artichoke than one you can find at the market. All sorts of delicious. I couldn't believe it: all of this untapped potential hanging out in my backyard year after year. Unfortunately the fruit is small enough that it's a lot of effort to peel and eat, for only a little reward of potent, incredibly delicious artichoke-yums.
I learned a lot about artichokes from the California Artichoke Advisory Board: http://www.artichokes.org/
The pretty artichoke picture is from UCSB's life science website: http://www.lifesci.ucsb.edu/~wallenstei
Now, don't confuse the artichoke with the Jerusalem Artichoke, which is a root ball from a plant related to sunflowers. It's described as a "lumpy root vegetable with a nutty, crunchy, sweet flesh" (from: http://kitchen.apartmenttherapy.com/foo
Check out this website for more information on Sunchokes, including leafing patterns: http://www.slugsandsalal.com/06/articho
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