5/14/10

This Week's Hidden Healthy Hit: Artichoke

This year, hands down, my favorite fruit is pomegranate and my favorite vegetable is the artichoke. These are probably the two most difficult items to eat, but so worth it!
Artichokes are in season April and May so I'm devastated I only have a few more weeks to enjoy them. But the good news: artichokes are on sale at Market Street for 2/$3. I'll admit I've already had about 7 artichokes in the last 6 weeks. I just can't get enough!

Artichokes need to be boiled or steamed for 15-20 minutes. I like to season the water with a garlic clove and lemon juice. Once they are tender and the leaves pull off easily, let cool briefly and then dig in (make sure you just eat the end of the leaf). I enjoy dipping the leaves in a little bit of butter or light mayonnaise mixed with olive oil, salt and pepper.
Artichokes are low in calories, fat free and high in fiber. Did you know in the first century wealthy Romans would eat artichokes covered in honey, vinegar and cumin? Artichokes also have a claim to fame. Marilyn Monroe was named the first Queen of the Artichokes in 1947. Not exactly earth-shattering but some fun trivia you can pull out at the dinner table tonight.

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