In an effort to eat more vegetables, I’ve challenged myself to try new options. A good friend suggested an artichoke.
When I checked them out in the produce department, I bought one. That’s right, just one, because I didn’t even know how to eat an artichoke. My friend said steamed artichokes are best and can easily be made in the microwave. So I tried it.
To steam an artichoke in the microwave, rinse the artichoke and leave the water that collects in the leaves. This is what produces steam in the microwave. Microwave until the outer leaves pull off easily. Probably 10-15 minutes. Time has to be adjusted for the size of the artichoke.
To eat, pull off a single leaf and dip the light-colored fleshy end in melted butter, mayo (I use lite) or other dip of your choice. My kids liked to dip in melted butter mixed with mayo. Other favorite dipping options include pesto or vinaigrette dressing.
After dipping in the sauce of your choice, place the fleshy end of the leaf in your mouth upside down and pull it while scraping the fleshy pulp into your mouth. Yum! You don’t eat the whole thing, just the fleshy pulp. The rest of the leaf is discarded. Also, the most outer leaves are generally bitter and not eaten.
As the leaves are removed, you eventually get to the fuzzy center known as the artichoke heart (also called the choke). Scrape off the fuzz, cut into pieces, dip in the sauce of your choice, and eat. This is my favorite part.
Learning how to prepare artichokes is worth the effort. They are a source of dietary potassium, magnesium, vitamin C, dietary fiber, and protein. TheseÂ unusual-looking vegetablesÂ are a healthy option to add to your diet.