Artichokes are roughly two to five inches in diameter when harvested. Their densely packed leaves form a compact floret with pistachio and lime green tones throughout. Each leaf contains a needle-like thorn on its tip and is usually cut off during preparation. Artichokes can be eaten raw when they are younger and more tender. A raw baby Artichoke is crisp, slightly bitter, and nutty. When cooked, Artichokes develop flavors of toasted nuts, dry grass, and caramel. Artichokes are the immature flower head of a herbaceous perennial thistle plant. When you eat an artichoke, you are eating, in essence, a flower bud. The first mature harvest of artichokes is known as the Kings, as it produces the largest-sized florets.
You can use the Artichokes Violet in pizzas, salads, pasta, and many other dishes.
Store in the fridge.
Purple Artichoke and White Bean Hummus
2 large purple artichokes, stem trimmed
2 tablespoons olive oil, divided
1 can of cannellini beans, drained and rinsed
3 tablespoons lemon juice
2 tablespoons tahini
1 garlic clove, minced
1/2 teaspoon salt plus more to taste
Freshly cracked black pepper
- Steam artichokes until the leaves are tender, about 45-55 minutes depending on the size.
- Remove leaves and set aside, and clean the fuzzy section from the hearts. Chop the hearts and reserve about 1 tablespoon for garnishing the hummus.
- Add artichoke hearts, 1 tablespoon olive oil, cannellini beans, lemon juice, tahini, garlic, salt, and a few grinds of freshly cracked black pepper to a food processor. Process until smooth. Taste and adjust seasoning if necessary.
- Transfer to a bowl and garnish with remaining olive oil, reserved artichoke hearts, lemon zest, fresh herbs, flaky sea salt, and black pepper, if desired. Serve with steamed purple artichoke leaves, vegetables, and crackers.