To clean an artichoke, wash it under running water and soak it in a bowl of water to get rid of any extra dirt that may be hiding.
Watch this video to learn how to prepare and cook an artichoke:
Prepare artichokes by peeling away the loose petals at the base by the stem. Cut the stem away at the base of the artichoke avoiding not to cut too much as this is the heart. Trim the top points by cutting away an inch from the top to expose the inner part of the petals. Use kitchen shears to trim the thorns from the outer petals. Rinse under cold, running water to remove any trapped dirt or debris, rub a cut lemon half against the trimmed parts of the artichoke to prevent oxidization [browning].
To boil, place trimmed whole artichokes in a deep pot fully submerge in cold water seasoned with 1 tablespoon of salt, 1 table spoon of lemon juice and 2 of your favourite fresh herb sprigs like thyme or basil [optional]. Boil artichokes depending on size for 30 to 40 minutes until tender [insert a sharp knife with little pressure].
To steam, place trimmed whole artichokes on a steaming insert in a pot filled with water barely touching the bottom of the insert. Steam for about 45 minutes, or until you can easily pull away a petal from the base. Depending on size, cooking times will vary.
To roast, after trimming, slice artichokes vertically in half. Use a spoon to scrape out the fuzzy choke, rub the cut side with half a lemon, drizzle with olive oil and season with garlic powder, salt and pepper. Roast at 375ºF [190ºC] cut side down on a baking sheet until tender [approximately 30 to 40 minutes]. Serve cut side up with grated Parmesan cheese!
To grill, after trimming slice artichokes in half vertically, remove the fuzzy choke and rub with half a lemon. Submerge in Boil for about 15 minutes until slightly firm, then remove and drain. Drizzle with olive oil and finish on the grill.
To microwave, after trimming place whole artichokes in a microwavable baking dish with enough water to almost submerge and cover. Microwave on high for 20 to 30 minutes until tender. Cooking times may vary based on microwave and size of artichoke.
To enjoy, remove the pedals of the artichoke and arrange them around your favourite dip. Meanwhile, prepare the heart of the artichoke by twisting off the small tender inner leaves to reveal the soft, fuzzy but inedible choke. Use a spoon to scrape out the choke to reveal the soft fleshy base of the artichoke known as the “heart”. Serve with drawn butter as a side dish with your favourite protein.
If you’re more of a visual learner, check out this in-depth video for how to prepare artichokes.