Get excited! Spring is in full effect, and that means markets all across the US are filling up with bright green produce. I can't wait to start cooking with the season's favorites: asparagus and artichokes. Artichokes are at their peak from March until June, so now is the time to enjoy these leafy bulbs. To find out how to select and cook artichokes and to share your favorite artichoke preparations in the comments, keep reading.
One food that we're especially excited about this Spring is the now-in-season artichoke. Besides tasting great, it's also good for you: one medium artichoke contains important minerals like iron and calcium, along with over 20 percent of your daily fiber needs, which may help the body burn more fat. From salads to pastas and everything in between, here's what healthy artichoke dishes we'll be cooking up this Spring.
One of the easiest ways to cook artichokes, which are currently in season, is to steam them whole. However, instead of using water, I recommend cooking the chokes in something with a little more complexity. A mixture of chicken broth, white wine, lemons, herbs, olive oil, and garlic is my preferred method. Don't forget to season the liquid with salt and pepper before placing the artichokes inside, upside-down. These simple ingredients give the artichokes a more delicious taste and depth of flavor.
How do you cook artichokes?
If you've never made a strata before, you are missing out! A strata is a casserole brunch dish that consists of bread, eggs, and cheese. Think of it like a savory breakfast bread pudding. Stratas are excellent for entertaining because they can be assembled the night before the party and feed a large crowd. My favorite strata recipe, one that I've served over and over again, is this version. It's got smoked ham, artichoke hearts, and three different kinds of cheese. To make it vegetarian, simply omit the ham. This recipe is one of my go-tos, and I highly recommend you give it a try. Here's the method.
I love artichokes in pasta, and this light and well-balanced recipe makes an impressive dinner without much effort or time.
Sometimes the simplest pasta dishes done right can surpass the complicated ones, and this is one such case. Crispy chicken cutlets lightly battered and seasoned pair perfectly with the tangy caper and artichoke pasta. And when season and time permits, you can always use fresh artichokes.
For the recipe, keep reading.
I'm a sucker for dips and not just any old dip, the hot, gooey kind that is loaded with awful amounts of mayonnaise and cheese. Although I don't indulge in this sort of richness all the time, there's plenty of occasions that call for a bubbly artichoke dip. Since I'm sure some of you feel the same way that I do about dip, I'm sharing my latest favorite artichoke recipe. It's got all the classic ingredients: frozen artichokes, the aforementioned mayonnaise, and two types of cheese, parmesan and cheddar. Jalapeño, lemon zest, and a hearty does of Tabasco season the mixture. If you are in need of a really good and decadent dip, make this one! Here's the recipe.
While I've already found my favorite recipe for a bubbling hot and gooey spinach-artichoke dip, the search is on for the best room temperature spinach-artichoke dip. This dip could be it: my friends loved it and there was none left, so it's definitely a keeper!
The classic recipe combines marinated artichoke hearts with frozen spinach and cream cheese. White wine makes it a little gourmet, parmesan cheese enriches the flavor, and a healthy shake of Tabasco adds heat. To test this dip out for yourself get the recipe — it would be wonderful served at a Memorial Day barbecue! — after the jump.
- Tyler Florence is set to open three Bay Area restaurants.
- Tyler Florence is set to open three Bay Area restaurants. — San Francisco Chronicle
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- Has the winner of Top Chef Masters been revealed again? Warning: spoiler alert! — Time Out New York
- Eight ideas for Martha Stewart video games.— Eater
- Learn how to make steamed artichokes. — Chow
- What not to eat when you're pregnant. — The Epi-Log
- Find out where some of Gourmet's editors have ended up. — Good Bite
- Domino's Pizza is now stalking people who haven't tried its new recipe. — Slice
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- San Francisco could be going meatless on Mondays. — Eater SF
- An inside look at Genoa's pesto showdown. — The Atlantic
Everyone knows a friend or family member with a birthday in Spring, so why not celebrate your loved one with a meal that honors the season? Keep things light and casual by inviting guests over for an informal Friday night dinner party.
Serve an easy, crowd-pleasing menu that highlights the bounty of green produce at the farmers market. Start with asparagus and ricotta toast canapes.
Then sit down to a hearty braised chicken and artichoke fricassée with morel mushrooms. The creamy and flavorful fricassée can be paired with pasta, rice, potatoes, or polenta, so select a side dish that suits your hosting needs. For these delightful recipes, please read more