Artichokes are in season this month, and Tom Douglas and Thierry Rautureau share their tips for cooking this prickly, delicious vegetable.
When picking an artichoke, "you want to make sure it's not a very light, shallow [feel] because it means the heart is light and the leaves are empty," Thierry says.
"The other thing I look for, I'm not so concerned if there's a little copper bronzing on the tips," Tom says. "The tips you're going to throw away anyway."
"If you're going to eat them whole, I take a pair of scissors and cut the little sharp tips off, and I turn them upside down in a steamer," Tom says. But he cautions: "It's a very light-flavored vegetable to begin with. If you boil them, and cool them under cold running water, you're literally washing the flavor away."
Instead, he recommends steaming the vegetable. "I like putting a steamer basket in," he says, "and doing a light steam and put the lid on the pan, and steam them three-quarters of the way done, and then let them rest."
Thierry mentions that using a knife can help you test for doneness. "Just take a knife and poke right through the bottom."
Tom adds, "If it gives, it's done."
Thierry also recommends making a dipping sauce for the leaves with mayonnaise, garlic, and even a little Sriracha sauce.
For the heart, however, he likes to drizzle a vinaigrette of red wine, shallots, and canola oil over the tender center.
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