Grilling makes almost everything taste better, including artichokes! The trick to making a great grilled artichoke is doing most of the cooking before it ever hits the grill. The artichoke should be steamed and cooked till fully tender, but not overly soft. Brush them with oil, sprinkle with salt and pepper, then grill till you char some grill marks into the stem. The result is a tender, flavorful artichoke – a nice change of pace from the steamed variety.
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How to Grill Artichokes
- 3 artichokes
- 1 lemon
- 1/8 cup grapeseed oil, or any oil with a high smoke point
- Salt and pepper
- For each artichoke, rinse under cold water. Pat dry with a clean kitchen towel or paper towel. Remove any stray leaves from the stem of the artichoke.
- With kitchen shears, or sharp scissors, remove the thorny tips from the leaves.With a sharp chef's knife or serrated knife, cut about an inch off of the top of the artichoke.Keep a lemon handy to rub onto the exposed areas so that they do not oxidize and turn brown.
- Remove the bitter, fibrous end of the stem with your knife, leaving about an inch left on the artichoke. Be sure to rub a lemon onto the exposed end of the stem.
- Peel the outer skin from the remaining stem. The stem can have a more bitter taste than the rest of the artichoke and removing the skin helps to take away some of the bitterness. Rub exposed peeled stem with lemon.Run the artichoke under cold water, pulling apart the leaves to carefully rinse out the vegetable and remove any impurities.
- With a sharp chef's knife, cut the artichoke in half. Remove the furry, inedible choke with a melon baller or spoon. Rinse the artichoke to remove all pieces of the furry choke, if needed. Be sure to keep exposed areas covered with lemon juice throughout process.
- You can grill the artichokes as halves, or slice them into quarters. Quarters will cook a bit faster; halves make a nice presentation.
- Boil a large pot of water with a steaming basket inside. Be sure that the water level doesn’t touch the bottom of the steaming basket. When water boils, place as many artichoke halves or quarters as you can fit into the basket in a single layer, exposed side down. Steam artichokes for around 45 minutes, or until they are nice and tender (but not overly soft or falling apart). Steaming time will vary based on the size of your artichokes; quarters will cook faster than halves. You should be able to easily insert a knife into the stem. Taste test the base of a leaf to make sure they are cooked enough to eat, as they will not cook much on the grill-- grilling is done to impart a smoky flavor, and won't make them much more tender.
- Preheat grill. With a brush, coat exposed area of artichokes with grapeseed oil, or any oil with a high smoke point.Sprinkle with salt and pepper.Place artichokes, exposed side down and leaf side up, onto the grill over medium heat. Cook for about 8 minutes, or until you have nice grill marks.
- To eat the artichoke, pull off the upper leaves one at a time. For each leaf, place the edible meaty area at the base of the leaf between your teeth, then scrape off the soft edible flesh. Discard the rest of the leaf. Once you've finished eating the leaves, enjoy the meaty base of the artichoke known as the heart, as well as the stem.
- Once grilled, artichokes can be served with a variety of sauces. Of course, they go great with the traditional sauces, like hollandaise.Olive oil-based dressings like vinaigrette also work well. I particularly love serving them with fresh lemon herb sauce.
Note: Strictly kosher Jews have their own guidelines for cleaning and consuming artichokes, which differ from the tutorials that appear on my site. If you’re concerned, you can learn more on the OK website.