9 Fresh Ways With Artichoke

Artichokes can be a bit of a faff to cook with. Whether you’re keen to master the raw vegetable or prefer to use ready-to-go jars of artichoke hearts, here seven top chefs share everything you need to know – alongside a selection of their favourite simple recipes…

Emilia Strazzanti, Strazzanti

“Our nonna always cooked her artichokes one way and they were delicious. Clean the artichokes by removing the toughest outer leaves. Wash well under cold water and leave to one side. In the meantime, take a deep saucepan and fill it a quarter of the way up with water and add half a lemon. Bring to the boil. Chop ½ clove of garlic for each artichoke and mix together with 1 tsp of dried oregano and 2 tbsp of finely chopped sundried tomatoes – to make it extra special we use capuliatu, which is a minced sun-dried tomato marinated in extra virgin olive oil. Flare open the leaves of the artichoke and generously stuff each layer with the garlic, oregano and tomato mix. Place the artichokes inside the pan, making sure the water reaches the artichoke half-way up. Place a lid on and simmer on a low heat for around 40 minutes or until the artichokes are tender. Eat each artichoke leaf individually, scraping the flesh and marinade off, then delve into the hidden tender heart at the end, making sure to spoon away the choke (the white centre) before you do.”
 
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Alberto Manso Miras, Tickets, Barcelona

“There are infinite varieties of artichoke, but my favourite is El Prat, which is found in Catalonia, Spain. The region’s mild climate – thanks to the protection of the mountains and the proximity of the sea – makes these artichokes sweeter and more tender. There are a few things to consider when prepping artichoke. When you cut into one, the phenolic substances in the vegetable react with the oxygen in the air, meaning dark spots will quickly appear because of the oxidisation. To avoid this, prepare a bowl of water with a few drops of lemon in, and drop the leaves into the water as soon as you cut into them off – the citric acid in the lemon will stop the oxidation process. My favourite way to cook artichokes is to simply remove the outer leaves and a little from the tip of the artichoke. Cut into thin slices and fry at 180°C until crisp. Drain on kitchen paper, finish with salt and pepper and accompany them with a sauce such as tzatziki. I also love to cook artichokes on a BBQ because of the incredible toasted and smoked flavour they absorb. I have two tips for this method: first, you need to cook them slowly for around 45 minutes. And before you put them on the heat, crush them in your hands to loosen up the leaves, which allows the smoke to permeate the artichoke. In Spain we would serve these with romesco sauce.”

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Zoe Simons, Waitrose

“If you don’t have time to prepare a fresh artichoke, our Essential Waitrose la dora artichoke hearts are a great alternative – they are so versatile and can be eaten hot or cold. They’re absolutely delicious served simply in a salad but if you blitz them up with some parmesan and fresh parsley, you have a quick and flavoursome pesto to spread on top of chicken or stirred through spaghetti."
 
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Inspired? Here are tasty four recipes to try at home…

BBQ Artichokes With Preserved Sweet Peppers, Whipped Goats Curd & Wild Leeks: Rogues London
BBQ Artichokes With Preserved Sweet Peppers, Whipped Goats Curd & Wild Leeks: Rogues London

Serves

2

Total Time

30 Minutes

Ingredients

2 pickled bell peppers
4 tomatoes, quartered
1 jar of baby artichokes
2 tbsp of rice wine vinegar
1 tsp of salt
2 tbsp of whipped goats’ curd
1 leek, thinly sliced
Zest of 1 lemon
Salt and pepper, to taste

Method

Step 1

Slice and then roast a few pickled bell peppers and tomatoes in the oven until soft and browning at the edges. 

Step 2

Peel the baby artichokes and slice, marinade the pieces in rice wine vinegar and salt for around 10 minutes, before frying in neutral oil at 175°C until crispy and golden brown. 

Step 3

Plate up with whipped goats curd, seasoned with lemon zest, salt and pepper.

Step 4

Garnish with your sliced leek and olive oil.
Jerusalem Artichoke & Truffle Soup with Rye Bread Croutons: Caroline Fleming
Jerusalem Artichoke & Truffle Soup with Rye Bread Croutons: Caroline Fleming

Serves

6

Difficulty

Easy

Total Time

50 Minutes

Ingredients

For the soup:
600g of Jerusalem artichokes
3 tbsp of olive oil
1 red onion, chopped
8 rashers of smoked streaky bacon, chopped
1l of chicken stock or water
½ tsp of salt
For the croutons:
4 tbsp of olive oil
1 clove of garlic, crushed
4 thick slices of rye bread, cut into strips
½ tsp of pink Himalayan salt or sea salt
White truffle oil, to drizzle
To serve:
4 rashers of smoked streaky bacon
2 tbsp of finely chopped parsley
4 tbsp of white truffle oil

Method

Step 1

Wash the artichokes well, then scrape off the thin outside layer with a kitchen knife. Cut the artichokes into thin slices and soak in water for 20 minutes, then drain.

Step 2

Heat the olive oil in a large saucepan. Add the onion and fry for a few minutes to soften, then add the chopped bacon and fry for another couple of minutes. Next add the artichokes and pour in the stock. Bring to a gentle boil, add the salt, and simmer for 20 minutes.

Step 3

While the soup is simmering, in a frying pan, heat the olive oil for the croutons and gently fry the garlic. Add the rye bread strips and sauté for about five minutes. Sprinkle with salt, then drain on kitchen towel until cooled and crispy. Just before serving, drizzle them with the truffle oil.

Step 4

In another frying pan, fry the four rashers of bacon until crispy, then remove from the pan, drain on kitchen towel and chop.

Step 5

Remove the soup from the heat, pour into a blender or food processor and blend to the desired consistency.

Step 6

Serve the soup with the bacon and chopped parsley sprinkled on top. Finally, drizzle each soup bowl with a little extra truffle oil and serve the rye bread croutons either on top or on the side.
Artichoke Carbonara: Lolo Milne, One Tin Can
Artichoke Carbonara: Lolo Milne, One Tin Can

Serves

2

Difficulty

Easy

Total Time

30 Minutes

Ingredients

2 tbsp of olive oil
2 onions, finely chopped
​1 large egg, plus 2 yolks
Pinch of ground nutmeg
​50g of parmesan, finely grated, plus extra to serve
2 garlic cloves, sliced
​400g tin of artichoke hearts, drained, rinsed and roughly torn
200g of spaghetti

Method

Step 1

Heat the olive oil in a large frying pan over a medium heat. Once hot, add the onion, turn the heat down and sweat gently for 20 minutes.

Step 2

Meanwhile, beat together the egg, extra yolks, nutmeg and cheese, then season (be generous with the black pepper) and set aside.

Step 3

Add the garlic to the pan and fry for 1 minute. Next, add the artichokes, cover with a lid and heat gently while you cook the spaghetti.

Step 4

Boil the spaghetti in a pan of salted water according to the pack instructions or until tender, scoop out a mug of cooking water, then drain.

Step 5

Remove the frying pan from the heat and immediately tip in the spaghetti. Toss in the sauce and then pour in the egg and cheese mixture. Working quickly, toss the pasta in the mixture, taking care to not allow the eggs to sit on the base of the pan (they may scramble). Once the pasta is coated, add a little of the reserved cooking water, if needed, to create a glossy sauce.

Step 6

Mound onto plates and top with extra parmesan and black pepper.
Roasted Butterbeans With Garlic Tomatoes & Cashew Pesto: Detox Kitchen
Roasted Butterbeans With Garlic Tomatoes & Cashew Pesto: Detox Kitchen

Serves

1

Difficulty

Easy

Total Time

30 Minutes

Ingredients

4 cooked artichokes, halved
200g of cooked butterbeans
50g of cherry tomatoes
1 tbsp olive oil
Pinch of Maldon salt
Pinch of pepper
1 courgette
For the pesto:
70g of cashew nuts
1 handful of spinach
1 tbsp of rapeseed oil
1 tbsp of water
5 sprigs of basil
½ tsp of Maldon salt

Method

Step 1

Preheat your oven to 180°C.

Step 2

Place the beans, garlic, artichoke and cherry tomatoes in a roasting tin, drizzle with olive oil and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Cook in the oven for 25-30 minutes until the beans are golden and crisp.

Step 3

Meanwhile make the pesto by placing all the ingredients in a food processor. Blitz until the consistency is creamy yet still a little chunky. This pesto recipe makes 100g, so store any leftovers in an airtight container and keep it in the fridge for up to seven days.

Step 4

Using a peeler, peel the courgette into thin ribbons and place in a serving bowl. Top with the cooked beans, artichokes and cherry tomatoes and spoon over the pesto.

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