Artichokes are naturally delicious, so there's no need to make a big deal out of roasting these super nutritious thistles. This artichoke recipe uses a simple roasting technique to concentrate the flavors. These artichokes can be eaten any way you like -- hot, warm or chilled.
- Using a serrated knife, cut off the stem of the artichoke where it meets the base. Turn the artichoke around and cut off 1 inch of the top. Quickly rub each artichoke with a cut lemon to keep them from discoloring.
- Tear off 4 large square pieces of heavy-duty foil. Rub a few drops of olive oil on the foil and place an artichoke stem side down. Stick a clove of garlic into the center and push down an inch or so. Sprinkle 1/4 teaspoon of salt over the top. Drizzle 1 tablespoon olive oil over the top. Finish by squeezing the half lemon over the top. The lemon juice will "wash" the salt and olive oil down in between the leaves.
- Gather up the corners of the foil and press together on top to tightly seal the artichoke (like a chocolate kiss). You can wrap in a second piece of foil if you don't think you have a tight enough seal.
- Repeat with the other artichokes. Place in a roasting pan and bake at 425 F for 1 hour and 30 minutes. Let rest for 20 minutes before unwrapping and serving.
All About Artichokes
Artichokes are loaded with nutrition, but aside from their value as a food, they are a thing of beauty in nature. The artichoke is one of the most visually appealing plants there is. It's actually the very large bud of a type of thistle that grows to be 4 feet tall and 6 feet wide. Artichoke buds that are not harvested bloom as violet-blue flowers. No wonder the artichoke is something to behold and can even be used as creative kitchen or table decor.
Now about that nutrition. The artichoke packs a powerful punch. This beautiful plant contains an abundance of antioxidants, some of which are good for the vascular system, fight inflammation, help to protect against heart disease and cancer, and lower cholesterol. Just one artichoke contains about 10 grams of fiber -- about half the recommended daily amount for women and a third for men. It beats out heavy hitters in the fiber-richness contest, like lima beans, raspberries, prunes, avocado, oats, nuts and carrots. Artichokes are also high in potassium, essential for maintaining electrolyte balance and keeping blood pressure in the normal range. Artichokes are also high in vitamin K and folic acid which promote a long list of health benefits. This plant is literally beautiful inside and out.