Learn how to cook (steam) and eat a fresh artichoke with this simple recipe, including a decadent lemon butter dipping sauce.
- 1 fresh artichoke
- 1 fresh lemon wedge
- 1–3 cloves garlic
- 1 bay leaf
- dipping sauce (see options below)
- Use a knife to slice off the bottom 1/2-inch (or more, if you’d like) of the artichoke stem, and the top 1 inch of the artichoke globe (the leaves on top). Remove any small leaves toward the bottom of the stem. Rinse the artichoke with water.
- Use kitchen shears to trim about 1/4/-inch off the pointy tips of each of the artichoke leaves (so that they don’t poke you when you eat them). Then rub the lemon wedge all over the leaves.
- Drop the lemon wedge in a large stockpot, and fill the pot with a few inches of water. Add garlic and bay leaf, place a steaming basket in the pot, then place the artichoke in the steaming basket stem-side-up. Cover the pot with a lid.
- Heat the water over medium-high heat until it comes to a simmer. Then reduce heat to medium-low and continue steaming the artichokes for 30 minutes, or until a knife can be very easily inserted in the stem of the artichoke and a leaf pulls off easily (and the fleshy part scrapes easily off of the leaves, as mentioned below).
- Remove from heat, and transfer the artichoke to your serving plate.
- To eat the artichoke, remove the outer leaves, dip them in your sauce if desired, then use your teeth to scrape off the soft fleshy part of the leaves. (See video for a visual.) Repeat until all of the leaves are removed.
- Then you will be left with the fuzzy “choke”. Use a spoon to scrape off all of the fuzzies (they’re inedible). Then use a knife and fork to cut the remaining artichoke heart and stem into bite-sized pieces. Dip in the sauce, and enjoy.
Dipping Sauce Ideas:
- Lemony Melted Butter Dipping Sauce: This is my favorite way to eat steamed artichokes! Just melt some salted butter in a small saucepan or in the microwave, add a squeeze of fresh lemon juice, a pinch of salt and pepper, and serve. And if you really feel like going the extra mile, sauté a clove of minced fresh garlic in the butter for 1 minute before serving. Delish.
- Blender Hollandaise Sauce: This version is super easy.
- Tzaziki Sauce: For a Mediterranean twist.
- Any kind of mayo or aioli
- …or whatever sounds good to you!