Preparing Globe Artichokes

Method

Globe artichokes make one of the most attractive starters, and – once you’ve mastered the initial technique – are easy to prepare and cook. Look for ones with firm green leaves and avoid any with brown tips or a dried-up appearance. Once cooked, the artichoke can be served hot or cold. Pull off the leaves and dip the leaf base in dressing or melted butter. Then scrape off the soft flesh with your front teeth. Eat the heart separately with a knife and fork. Discard the hairy choke in the centre.

  1. Score round the stem base with a sharp knife, then pull down sharply to remove. Use a sharp knife to cut off the top for presentation if you like.

  2. Trim the tips of the leaves with scissors. Cook by simmering in water with some fresh lemon juice until the base leaves separate easily, about 40 minutes.

  3. Drain and cool upside down in a colander. Pull the top leaves apart to reveal the inner purple ones. Grasp these firmly and pull up hard, revealing the hairy choke.

  4. Using a teaspoon, scrape out the choke in one piece as much as possible and discard, exposing the heart. Replace the purple leaves, reshape and serve.

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