Poached Artichokes

Happy National Artichoke day! I absolutely love all things artichoke. I mean come on…what¬†an amazing addition to your favorite¬†pasta dish, on a pizza, in a dip, they make a perfect salad topping or seriously just as good all by its little lonesome. How could you not love this versatile veggie. I could eat a whole artichoke just for din ūüôā As we celebrate this fun holiday – National Artichoke day, I share my favorite way to make this tasty side dish, or full meal…enjoy!¬†When shopping for artichokes, I look for medium to large-sized, tight and bright green colored selections. I also keep an eye out for when they are on sale because they can get a little pricey. The prime artichoke season starts in March and continues through late April.
To prepare your artichokes, cut the stem and remove all the little leaves towards the stalk. Cut the tips of each leaf off with scissors (see above). Once the tips are cut, take a large knife and cut the top of the artichoke off – about 1/4″ to 1/2″.¬†Prepare a large pot of boiling water with the following:

1 onion – thinly sliced
1 lemon – thinly sliced
4-5 garlic cloves, smashed
1 tbsp. ground black pepper
1 1/2 teas. red chili pepper flake
3/4 c. red wine vinegar
2 tbsp. whole black peppercorns

Salt the water like you would when preparing pasta. I don’t mean a pinch, salt it up so it tastes like the sea ūüôā ¬†Bring the water to a boil, add 1-2 artichokes and boil/simmer covered for 45 min- 1 hour. Cover the artichokes with a plate if needed to keep them under the water. Test the artichokes by pulling the outer leaves¬†and taste for “doneness”. Once done, remove artichokes from water and drain upside down in a bowl. Serve with your favorite dipping accouterments. Bon appetit and happy National Artichoke Day!

 

Happy March 1st

Signs of spring are everywhere! ¬†Especially in SoCal where we are basking in 80 degree temps. Makes me want to move my desk outside to enjoy these “winter” days.

It’s hard to believe that today we kickoff March! How have the first months of 2016 gone by so fast? Oh well, we will celebrate all that March has to offer. I mean who doesn’t love St Patty’s day? We sure do!

National Artichoke day, yup that’s in March (keep an eye out for a tasty recipe). And don’t forget we are only three weeks away from the spring equinox. That’s when we “spring our clocks forward” and extra hour of daylight in the evening. Can I tell you how excited that makes me?! I love having the opportunity after work to spend it outdoors chasing that sunset!

And the most important date of March…Gregory’s birthday! What shall we do to celebrate?