Vegetable of the year 2024 : Artichoke

Cultivation and season
The artichoke bears the Latin name: Cynara scolymus L. This plant is found in the Mediterranean region. The plant dates back to the 8th century BC.

Artichokes are actually the flower buds of a thistle. These grey-green flower buds consist of many small leaves that are folded around a flower base. On this flower base (called the 'heart'), a kind of hairy 'hay' grows. The flower buds are harvested before they bloom. If you let an artichoke continue to grow, the leaves will open, and the 'hay' inside will develop into a beautiful purple flower.

The closed flower buds are harvested in August and September. After harvesting, the flower stem is cut from the plant. The plants are protected from frost in winter by covering them with a thick layer of straw.

An artichoke weighs 40 grams. A nice contribution to the 250 grams you need daily.

Artichoke Flavor
The artichoke has a soft, slightly bitter taste.

Photo's on the right see

You can use artichokes like this:

Boil them whole and then suck out each leaf. When all the leaves are removed, cut away the hay and eat the bottom. Delicious with a vinaigrette or garlic sauce.
Fill whole artichokes with shrimp, egg, or ham salad (unfold the leaves and cut away the hay to make room for filling).
Use cooked bottoms on (whole wheat) pizzas and in salads.
Combine artichoke hearts with whole wheat pasta, ham, and tomato sauce.
Whole small artichokes can be eaten as they are. For example, grilled on the barbecue or baked in the oven.


Recipes with artichokes