There are a lot of ways to cook artichokes. The size and type of the artichokes are factors to consider. The tiny purple artichokes that show up at farmers markets this time of year are terrific fried in olive oil. They’re also tender enough to be trimmed, sliced razor thin, and eaten raw. But what about the more intimidating (much larger) Globe Artichokes? They come in colors that range from pale green, through purple, to almost black. These beauties are most often steamed. Which is delicious. But I find roasted artichokes express their uniquely nutty flavor even better.
Before we discuss roasted artichokes I think we need to address an obvious fact: Artichokes look menacing. The biggest and scariest of them have pointy tips that are capable of drawing blood if handled too casually. After all an artichoke is a thistle, and thistle is not an appetizing word. So I understand why you often stare at the artichoke in your produce section, pondering how just how to handle this unruly beauty without actually picking it up. I also understand why you often walk away– feeling defeated.
The artichoke is one of the most delicately flavored vegetables. I know you love its distinctive taste. However, the best artichokes have a relatively short season that peaks in May. Each week you stand there pondering, the roasted artichoke window is closing. So before you walk away from an artichoke one more time, I want to remind you that the artichoke’s rough exterior is hiding a heart of green gold.
This version of Roasted Artichokes is adapted from a traditional Italian method where the artichokes are dressed with bold flavors then cooked in the embers of a wood fire. Which would certainly be special. However, this classic Italian method is easily handled at home in a very hot oven. GREG
These Purple Artichokes were supplied to me by Melissa’s Produce. I received no other compensation.