How to Prepare and Eat an Artichoke

1 artichoke per person
melted butter
lemon juice


Bring a large pot of water to boil. Meanwhile, remove most of the stem and carefully clean the artichoke, removing all dirt or grit. Place in a steamer and steam for about 20 minutes or until or until petal near the center pulls out easily. Meanwhile, combine melted butter and lemon juice to taste. To eat: dip each petal into the lemon-butter. Hold it between your teeth and drag to the remove the soft, pulpy bit at the base. Continue until you reach the middle, then scrape out the fuzzy bits (the choke) and eat the soft heart beneath.

My thoughts:

It amazes me how any one discovered that the artichoke was edible even to the smallest degree. Who thought: if only I steamed this prickly thing and only ate the bottoms of the leaves, it would be a taste sensation? Tasty, but a lot of work!


  1. Artichokes are darn close to my favorite veggie!

  2. This is so funny… we had this exact same conversation at our dinner party this weekend about artichokes. I’d love to have been around when they figured out how to eat that one!

  3. Yay Rachel — I love artichokes.

  4. Have you ever had fried artichokes? I first had them in the Jewish Ghetto in Rome. The leaves are crispy…really yummy.
    No jokes about southerners frying everything!!

  5. Sandi: No, I haven’t but it sounds yummy!

  6. (delurking) I’ve got a funny family story about artichokes. My grandmother was making artichokes for her new husband for the first time and my grandfather, who had never seen one before, pulled off a whole leaf and popped it into his mouth. My grandmother hadn’t even cut the spines off! Quite a painful event.

  7. even more amazing if you take into consideration the taste of them uncooked! bleah! i grew up in castroville, ‘the artichoke capitol of the world’, and my dad and grampa worked on an artichoke ranch when i was little. after handling the ‘chokes, your hands have a yucky taste too!

  8. You can actually eat the stem, provided you take a vegetable peeler to it and take the tough outter skin off. It’s like an extension of the heart itself.