Thursday, 1 July 2010

Vegetables! With butter...

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I was hoping to post about how I do, on occasion, eat things that don't involve butter/sugar/flour, but unfortunately these steamed artichokes were delicious dipped in a lemon-butter mishmash of my own making.  Still, they were green and healthy and savory, so that's something new and different for this blog!

In my defense, it's not that I don't eat healthy, delicious, savory foods, but rather that I rarely photograph them.  And, in fairness to the bf, he's usually the one cooking them (although these 'chokes were mine and mine alone).  Ever since we got the new camera, he's also been photographing them on occasion, and I'm trying to get him to sign on as an admin and do the savory side of things here on Linzers, but so far he's resisted, so alas you'll just have to make do with butter/sugar/flour for now.

And artichokes.  Because we couldn't resist these beauties we found at Borough market last weekend.

My mom used to make steamed artichokes all the time when I was a kid, and my brother and I loved them (not least because we got to dip the leaves in mayonnaise, with which we were rarely allowed such liberties), but I'd never made them before.  And we don't own a steamer.  But again, the internet came to the rescue, with multiple advice boards and recipes and photo-tutorials.  So I put on my big-girl apron, pretended I was my mother for an evening, and bravely went where no sweeet tooth has gone before.

And can I just say?  I rock at steaming artichokes.  And making 'sauces' out of butter and lemon juice.  And mustard.  I may have to try this savory cooking thing more often...

Steamed Artichokes:
Adapted from here and here

In a stainless steel saucepan, just large enough to fit both (or all) your artichokes standing up, bring to boil:
     1-2 inches water
     1 slice of lemon
     1-2 cloves garlic
     1 bay leaf
     2-4 artichokes, on end or in a steamer basket, with stems cut to 1 inch and toughest/dirtiest outer leaves pulled off.

Turn the heat down to a simmer, and cook for 25-45 minutes, until outer leaves pull off easily.  Ours took 25 minutes exactly and they were perfect.  Eat hot or cooled, dipping the edges of the leaves in any number of delicious sauces, ranging from simple melted butter to a mayo/mustard mix to a fancy shallot vinagrette!  Then find the heart, excavate it, and finish the sucker off!*

*No, I do not have Twilight fever, but it appears the vamp language has gotten under my skin somehow...  Sorry.

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