Not so pretty ~ but oh so good.
I came across these small, fist sized, not so pretty looking artichokes at the Manhattan Fruit Exchange in Chelsea Market earlier this week on one of the coldest days this season. The motto, Frost Kissed Artichokes, not so pretty ~ but oh good, written in Sharpie and with a very reasonable per pound price I grabbed four of them.
I cut the top off of two of the four artichokes with a serrated knife and then snipped the thorny top off of each leaf with a heavy duty kitchen scissor. As The Utilitarian Chef, gadgets are one thing I don’t feed into but good kitchen sheers is one of the few pieces of equipment I think is great to have in ones kitchen. So is a serrated knife.
I was reheating left over sushi rice I had from my first try at hako/press sushi, I got a press box as a holiday gift, so I decided to thrown these two artichokes into the steamer along side the rice. I added a pinch of Kosher salt, a wedge of lemon and a 2 dents of garlic to the water that came to just below the bottom of the steamer in a heavy bottomed pot. Artichokes are ready in 15 – 20 minutes. The rice was certainly ready.
While the artichokes and rice were steaming I flash wilted well washed, dark green, curly kale in a very hot saute pan with just a little olive oil. I also whipped up a cup of organic mayonnaise and capers – for the artichokes.
I served the wilted kale on top of the rice and put the artichokes in another bowl. All I can tell you is, these Frost Kissed, battered looking artichokes are so Dlicious I ate the first one w/out even dipping one leaf or nibble of the heart into the traditional sauce I made for it. Another surprise from these Dlectable chokes is that when you get to the heart and have to remove the thistles, they’re so soft they wipe away with a swipe of your finger.
Get them, the season is short. You can eat the whole thing: leaves, heart and stem – right to the bottom.