When I was a kid, we were rewarded for having good grades by getting a treat. Mine fluctuated between a giant rice crispy treat and an artichoke. If I was really lucky mom would make artichokes for dinner along with some salad, but I focused on the artichoke.
Artichokes are really stress-free once you know how to make them, and you can even put them in the oven or on the grill. And, for all tastes, I have four sauces that I love for you to try.
Boiling the Artichoke
- One artichoke
- Saucepan half-filled with water
Cut off the stem of the artichoke so it can stand in the pan (as below)
Remove the small leaves around the base
With scissors cut off the pointed edges of the artichoke leaves. There is usually a point at the top where the leaves are about the same length, you can cut this off with a knife.
Place the trimmed artichoke in a saucepan half-filled with water:
Cover the pan with a lid and bring to a boil
Once boiling, lower the temperature to a rolling boil, and let boil for 30 minutes
Using tongs or something to protect your hands, turn upside-down to drain and set aside until cooled enough to eat with your hands
Note: boiling time is based on the size of your artichoke, so feel free to test it by pulling on one of the bottom leaves with barbecue tongs. If the leaf is going to come off, it’s done.
The Classic Sauce: Lemon Butter
This is what I grew up with, and the great thing is that you can just add more or less lemon to taste. Careful with the amount of butter you use. If you are a more calorie conscious person, the other dips is healthier.
- Juice from 1/2 lemon (about 1.5 tbsp)
- 2 tbsp salted butter
Melt butter on a low heat until melted
Take butter off heat
Add lemon juice and stir until smooth
The Mediterranean: Tarragon Sauce
This is a healthier dip, replacing butter with healthy fats of olive oil loses a little flavour, so the cider vinegar and mustard add some interesting flavours to the tarragon.
- 4 tbsp oil
- 2 tbsp cider vinegar
- 1 tbsp Dijon mustard
- 1 tbsp tarragon
- zest from 1/2 a lemon
- pinch of salt and pepper
Mix all of the ingredients together with a whisk until smooth
I hope you like it!