Artichoke (Globe)


FUN FACTS 

BN: (Cynara cardunculus) AKA 洋蓟  (yángjì).   In China, it's common practice to boil artichoke for the juice, but throw out the parts.  Castroville, California claims to be the Artichoke Capital of the World. In 1947 Marilyn Monroe, then still going by her given name Norma Jean, was crowned Castroville’s first Artichoke Queen.¹ Artichoke is one of the most popular flavors in bubble tea shops.

CONSTITUENTS

Contains cynaris, inulin, sesquiterpene, lactone, cynaropicrin

BENEFITS 

Diabetes, gallbladder, indigestion, lowers blood sugar

PRODUCTS

Fresh is best!  Fresh artichokes are available at many grocery stores during peak season. In the Austin area, I can usually find them at Sprouts year round.  Wholefoods often carries them too.  Google "artichoke" with any of the following categories to find the variety of products.  Below are links to a few examples - not a comprehensive list.

COOKING

Chinese preparation

Martha Stewart preparation

EDITOR EXPERIENCE 

I've enjoyed artichokes for as long as I can remember - mostly as a delivery mechanism for delicious salty garlic butter.  I've steamed, baked, and boiled them with many recipes over the years -never knew its medicinal benefits until recently.  I've always eaten the artichoke and discards the liquid I cooked it in.  Funny story: A month ago, an aunt was visiting from China.  While having dinner at her house, she served a clear broth that she touted as some special American plant having multiple health benefits, especially for diabetes.  She claimed to have boiled them for a couple of hours in low heat.  I took a sip and realized that she was talking about artichokes (can't miss the flavor of artichokes).  I looked at the clear broth and asked "where's the artichoke?"  She gave me a quizzical look and said, "the leaves are not edible.  They're in the pot.  The broth is the what's important."  So they've been preparing artichoke soup for years, but never eating the artichoke!

Tonight, I made artichoke soup, where I drank the soup and dined on the yummy artichokes.  The soup was totally tasty.  Here's the gist of my recipe.  It's more like artichoke vegetable stew.

— Recipe Artichoke soup:

2 artichokes (cut in quarters, remove choke -fuzzy part)

6 left over chicken leg bones (or 32 oz chicken broth)

1 apple

1 cup onion

1/4 teaspoon of Italian seasoning or other herbs

Salt to taste

Toss them all in a pot and bring to boil, reduce to low heat for an hour.

      

Other recipes:

Simply roasted artichokes,    Ultimate stuffed artichoke,  Artichoke Soup 

 

 

REFERENCES

  1. Topfoodfacts.com 

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