What Does Artichoke Taste Like? How To Prepare and Eat Artichokes
Are you one of those who keep thinking about what does artichoke taste like? Artichoke is the oldest grown vegetable that is accessible in the market today. This vegetable originated in the Mediterranean and is highly appreciated for its soft taste, essential nutrients, and its versatility.
Artichoke is a vegetable that is well-known in Europe and other Western countries. This vegetable has an earthy flavor, which is quite liked by many people. Artichoke has a tangy and mildly sweet taste and if combined with ordinary dishes, it can make amazingly delicious food.
In this article, we have covered everything about artichokes from their uses to their health benefits.
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- What Is An Artichoke?
- What Are Artichokes Used For?
- What Are The Health Benefits of Artichokes?
- How To Choose Artichokes?
- How To Store Artichokes?
- What Does Artichoke Taste Like?
- What Is Jerusalem Artichoke and How Does It Taste Like?
- How To Prepare and Eat Artichokes?
- Problems Related To Eating Artichokes and Solutions
- FAQs Regarding Artichokes
What Is An Artichoke?
An artichoke has two parts, the base and the flower bud. The base is edible and it is cultivated as a food whereas the flower bud blooms to form artichoke flowers. To put it in simple words, artichoke is said to be a vegetable and what we consume is the immature part of the artichoke plant.
The core feature of artichokes is that this vegetable contains a large number of crucial minerals and vitamins along with folic acid, antioxidants, and dietary fiber. Therefore, artichokes are an excellent choice for a healthy diet. So, buy them on your next trip to the grocery store.
Artichoke texture is meaty and they add a lot of flavor to the dishes. Due to their versatile nature, they can be combined with various dishes to increase their flavor and taste.
What Are Artichokes Used For?
The possible areas where artichokes are effective are mentioned below.
According to research, consuming artichoke extract via mouth can reduce low-density and total bad cholesterol in humans who have high cholesterol. You can notice the improvements after six to twelve weeks of the treatment.
The studies that have used cynarin, a chemical in artichoke, have resulted in conflicting situations. However, you need to remember that artichoke juice does not reduce cholesterol levels. Rather, it can raise blood fat levels.
Research depicts that consuming artichoke extract by mouth can lower the indications of indigestion, such as stomach pain, flatulence, vomiting, and nausea. You can witness improvement after two to eight weeks of the treatment process.
Other possible ways to use artichoke are given below.
- Spreads and Dips
- Pizza topping
- Casseroles and Stews
What Are The Health Benefits of Artichokes?
This vegetable is widely used for its medicinal properties. Artichokes have certain health benefits, such as better digestion, liver health, heart health, and low blood sugar levels.
The artichoke extract, which has a high amount of compounds, is well-known as a supplement. We have a list of a few health benefits of the artichoke extract and artichoke itself.
#1. May contain anti-cancer effects
Test-tube and animal studies show that artichoke extract can weaken the growth of cancer. A few antioxidants, such as quercetin, rutin, gallic acid, and silymarin are said to be responsible for the anti-cancer effects.
Apart from test-tube and animal studies, no human studies have been done to claim this health benefit in humans. Therefore, further research is required to find out if this will work in human beings too.
#2. May reduce symptoms of IBS
IBS or Irritable Bowel Syndrome is an issue in the human body that hampers the digestive system. It can lead to diarrhea, constipation, bloating, cramping, flatulence, and stomach ache. In one of the studies, eating artichoke leaf extract everyday up to 6 weeks helped in reducing the indications.
A different study found that around 205 people with irritable bowel syndrome, who consumed one to two capsules of artichoke extract for around 2 months, had lowered their indications of IBS by 26%.
A few compounds in artichoke contain anti-spasmodic properties. This means that they can assist in stopping muscle spasm which is common in irritable bowel syndrome, reduce inflammation, and balance gut bacteria. While this seems promising in curing IBS, an extensive human study is required.
#3. May reduce blood sugar levels
Artichokes may assist in reducing blood sugar levels. A study found that 40 overweight adults, who ate artichoke extract and kidney beans daily for about 2 months, had successfully reduced fast blood sugar levels.
It is quite unclear how much percentage of artichoke extract was effective in reducing blood sugar levels. Another study suggested that the intake of boiled artichoke helped in reducing insulin levels and blood sugar just after thirty minutes of eating. However, there isn’t a clear understanding and research about how artichokes lower blood sugar levels.
#4. May help in improving Liver health
Artichokes may tend to protect the liver from getting damaged as well as support the expansion of new tissues. Artichokes boost the manufacturing of bile juice that helps to erase the dangerous toxins from the liver.
In a study, artichoke extracts offered to rats gave a positive result. Rats showed less damage in their livers, better functioning of the liver, and high antioxidant levels. Human studies have also displayed positive results on liver health.
According to a few scientists, some antioxidants like silymarin and cynarin are responsible for improving liver health.
#5. May help in the progress of digestive health
Artichokes are rich in fiber that can improve the health of the digestive system. They consist of inulin, which is a fiber that acts as a prebiotic.
A study claimed that 13 adults experienced progress in gut bacteria after intaking artichoke extract for about 3 weeks. Artichoke offers relief from indications of indigestion like nausea, heartburn, and bloating.
Artichokes are completely loaded with essential nutrients. They are low in fats, rich in vitamins, minerals, antioxidants, and fiber. They are specifically high in Vitamin K, Vitamin C, and folate. Apart from these nutrients, artichokes provide minerals, such as iron, potassium, phosphorus, and magnesium.
On the top of everything, artichokes are the richest vegetable in antioxidants among all the other vegetables.
How To Choose Artichokes?
In this section, we will tell you how to choose the perfect artichokes. There are three steps that will help you to find the best artichokes.
1. Analyze the weight of artichokes
A fresh and healthy artichoke will be heavy than its size. To analyze the weight of artichokes, lift one artichoke and check the weight. You will have to compare the weight with other artichokes to get an idea.
Small artichokes are equally delicious as large artichokes. Small artichokes won’t be heavy. So, compare the weight of small artichokes with other small artichokes.
2. Scrutinize the leaves of artichokes
If the size of artichokes is heavy, watch out for the artichoke leaves. A fresh and healthy artichoke has green leaves that are closely packed. There might be some leaves that have a purple tint. But, make sure to not buy artichoke’s whose tip is brown. Also, avoid buying artichokes whose leaves are dry, spongy, split, pitted, splayed, and loose.
3. Squeeze the leaves of the artichoke
If you feel that the artichoke is heavy and has fresh leaves, use the squeeze test to analyze if you have picked a good artichoke.
All you have to do is picking the artichoke and bring it near your ear, then squeeze the leaves with the use of your fingers. If you listen to a ‘squeak’ sound, it means that the artichoke is fresh and healthy.
If the leaves of an artichoke are healthy, they make a ‘squeak’ sound on squeezing. This is an indication that the artichokes are fresh and the leaves are crisp.
How To Store Artichokes?
After choosing fresh and healthy artichokes, it is time to know how to store them. Storing artichokes is easy if you remember the following tips. This will help your artichokes to stay fresh.
1. Don’t wash the artichokes
Many people think it is a good choice to wash the artichokes with water and store them for later use. But, washing the artichokes will spoil them much faster. The reason is, if you wash them, the peel can possibly break down if there is a lot of moisture and this can result in an infection. You can wash artichokes only if you plan to cook or eat them.
2. Sprinkle some water on the stems
You don’t need to wash the whole artichoke before storing, but you have to ensure that the stems are moist before refrigerating. Just sprinkle some water over the artichoke’s stem to prevent dehydration.
Don’t sprinkle a lot of water otherwise the vegetable will grow mold. To prevent over-watering the stems, use a spray bottle and spray the stems of artichokes. Make sure to hold the spray bottle at a distance of 25.4 cm away while doing so.
3. Keep the artichokes in a plastic bag
After sprinkling water on the stems, keep the artichokes in a plastic bag. Place the plastic bag in the refrigerator. Try to store the artichokes in the coldest part of the fridge. You can store the artichokes for around 7 days in the refrigerator.
What Does Artichoke Taste Like?
Now that you are aware that artichokes are vegetables that are fully edible. The question arises, what does artichoke taste like?
Well, you can’t tell the taste of anything by its outer appearance. Artichokes look a little inedible but when cooked, they result in a tasty meal. The taste and flavor of artichokes is dependent on the method of cooking or processing them.
Artichokes don’t look appealing but they are loaded with rich nutrients. These nutrients are very beneficial for your health. Now, we will explore every way in which artichoke can be processed and consumed.
Let's explore the Artichokes' tastes from the menus below:
Boiled artichokes have a nutty and sweet taste. However, boiled artichokes will not be liked by people who eat spicy food.
To increase the flavor, sprinkle some salt in the boiling artichokes water. You can serve boiled artichokes with mayonnaise, butter, and various sauces to add a unique flavor.
Steaming is the most ordinary way to prepare artichokes. It is easy, quick, and effective in retaining the nutritional content of the artichokes.
You can steam the artichokes in a rice cooker as the process is almost same. Generally, artichokes tend to be mild in taste but once they are steamed, they become soft, sweet, and juicy.
Grilling is said to be a bizarre way to make artichokes. However, grilling artichokes can generate a satisfying result. In general, grilling any vegetable or food enhances the flavor; therefore you can surely try to grill artichokes and enjoy the unique flavor.
After grilling, artichokes become distinctive. Their mild flavor disappears, and a smoky and sweet flavor can be felt. The texture of grilled artichokes is quite like grilled asparagus.
Frying artichokes can be another way to make them. This specific method is quite interesting, as frying artichokes enhances the flavor and texture.
You can stir-fry or pan-fry artichokes. Although, some nutrients will be lost due to heat but the taste is excellent.
An important point to remember is if you want to fry artichokes, use a superior- quality pot or pan to get the whole flavor.
Fresh artichokes refer to the uncooked artichokes. We are sure that you will be surprised to know that you can consume raw artichokes. It is not the usual method to consume artichokes, but a lot of people enjoy eating raw artichokes.
The taste of raw artichokes is crunchy, nutty, and light. If you think they taste bitter if consumed raw, then you are wrong. Raw artichokes will make up as tasty salads if properly washed and prepped.
What Is Jerusalem Artichoke and How Does It Taste Like?
Want to know what does Jerusalem artichoke taste like? Well, Jerusalem artichoke has no relation to Jerusalem. They generally grow up to 3m in height. Jerusalem artichoke is a very versatile vegetable that can be mashed, battered, baked, boiled, fried, and sautéed. They contain important nutrients, such as vitamin C, fiber, potassium, and iron.
You can prepare different dishes using Jerusalem artichokes. Try to experiment with different spices, sauces, and other vegetables to create a delicious dish.
How To Prepare and Eat Artichokes?
If you have never eaten an artichoke, this vegetable can pose some challenges if you plan to prepare and eat them.
We have simplified the method of preparing and eating artichokes in 10 steps. So, without any further ado, let’s begin.
10 Steps to prepare and eat artichokes
1. Cut the pointed leaf tips with the assistance of an artichoke scissor or knife. This step is not compulsory but it helps in eating the artichokes easily.
2. Steam the artichokes for around fifty minutes. Do not boil them on a high level. You can check if they are boiled by piercing the stem with a pointed object. You can microwave the artichokes too but you have to wrap them in plastic individually for around 10-15 minutes. If you don’t have a microwave, place the artichokes in a pressure cooker for around 19-20 minutes. You will easily know when it’s done by plucking the leaf; if it comes out easily that means they are steamed.
3. Drain the artichokes upside down.
4. Pluck the outer leaves slowly. You will notice the edible portion clearly that is light in color.
5. Coat the tips of artichokes with any dip that you have.
A few common dips are written below.
- Melted butter
- Combination of butter and garlic
- Combination of salt, vinegar, and oil
- Ranch dressing
6. You have to scrape off the tender part at the bottom of the artichoke leaf. Just place the leaf in your mouth, close the teeth on it, and draw the leaf outside.
7. Dispose of the leftover leaves on a plate or container.
8. Keep discarding till you obtain the smallest leaves at the center. These leaves don’t have a meaty texture and they possess a translucent feature.
9. Draw out the from the center part. This part is very prickly.
10. You can remove the leftover choke with a spoon. If you cook it well, the choke will draw out smoothly. There are different ways to remove the choke but a spoon works really fine.
Problems Related To Eating Artichokes and Solutions
Artichoke is safe to consume in normal quantity. However, a few people might face issues like upset stomach, gas, and diarrhea. They can also lead to some allergies.
People who can be more allergic to artichokes are those who are usually allergic to plants, such as daisies, herbs, and marigold.
It is advisable to eat artichokes in small quantities. Also, it is better to remove the artichoke choke before you prepare them. If you feel that you’re allergic, then stop the consumption immediately and consult a doctor.
FAQs Regarding Artichokes
There are a few questions that are asked frequently by people. Here’s a list of some of the questions.
Q1. What is the usual size of artichokes?
They are usually large but once you peel off the outer leaves of artichokes, the remaining part is of modest size.
Q2. How to eat artichokes?
You can make artichokes in multiple. A section in the article has been dedicated to different ways of eating artichokes.
Q3. How many parts does an artichoke have?
There are six parts in an artichoke.
- Inner and outer petals
We hope that you are no more seeking answers to ‘What does an artichoke taste like?’ Try different preparation methods to consume artichoke and see if you like it.
Do not just try these cooking methods instead; try some of your own methods and experiment. Use different spices and vegetables to give a unique taste to artichokes. Let us know your favorite way of eating artichokes; we will be delighted to know. Thank you for reading the article.