Super Bowl Sunday food should be fun, delicious and healthy.
Spring is happening and artichokes are showing up in our farmers markets. The dark green vegetable, prized by cooks, is healthy and easy-to-prepare.
Whether you find one that is the size of your hand or a larger one the size of a soft ball, give it a squeeze. If the artichoke feels solid, you've found a good one. An artichoke past its prime will be squishy like a child's squeeze toy. Make sure all the leaves are green. Don't buy an artichoke with brown or blackened leaves.
Roasted or Grilled Artichokes
One person can easily eat one artichoke the size of your hand. The larger artichokes will feed 2-3 people as an appetizer or a side dish.
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cooking Time: 30-35 minutes
Total Time: 40-45 minutes
4 medium sized or 2 large artichokes, washed
1 tablespoon kosher salt
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 teaspoon sea salt
1/2 teaspoon black pepper
1/4 cup sweet butter (optional)
Preheat oven to 350F. Or, set grill (indoor or outdoor) to medium-high.
Place a large stock pot on the stove on a high flame. Add kosher salt. Bring to a low boil. Cover.
To roast the artichoke sections after boiling, cover the bottom of a baking sheet with parchment paper, a Silpat sheet or a piece of aluminum foil. Set aside.
Using scissors trim off the pointy end of each artichoke leaf.
Trim off the stem of each artichoke, flush to the bottom. Discard the stems.
Give each artichoke a flat-top haircut. Place the artichoke on its side. Using a chefs knife, trim off the top 1/4" of each artichoke and discard.
Place the artichoke on the cutting board. Using a chefs knife, cut each artichoke in half, from bottom to the top. Cut each half into two pieces. If the artichoke is large, cut those four pieces in half, creating eight segments.
Place all the artichoke sections in the boiling salted water. Cover and cook 10 minutes.
Using the pairing knife, test one of the artichoke sections. The knife should easily go into the fleshy part on the bottom of the leaves. If the knife doesn't go in easily, cook another 5 minutes but beware not to over cook the artichokes. They should be firm not mushy.
Place a colander or strainer in the sink. Pour the hot salted water with the artichoke sections into the colander and drain.
Transfer the artichoke sections to a mixing bowl. Drizzle with olive oil. Season with sea salt and black pepper. Toss well to coat.
If grilling, place the artichokes on the pre-heated grill. Turn frequently to avoid burning. Remove when grill marks appear on all sides.
If baking in the oven, arrange the artichokes on the prepared baking sheet, leaving room between the sections.
Place in the oven and cook 15 minutes. Using tongs, turn the sections over and place back in the oven another 15 minutes so they cook evenly.
Remove the artichokes from the oven and serve hot or at room temperature with sea salt, black pepper and small dishes of melted butter (optional).
If serving with melted butter (optional), melt the butter in a small saucepan being careful to avoid burning.