Artichokes offer a multitude health benefits. Not only are they low in calories and fat, they are also high in fiber and nutrients. Listed as number seven on the USDA’s list of top antioxidant foods, they are loaded with vitamin C (resistance against infections and free radicals), vitamin K (bone and brain health) and B complex vitamins (metabolism). Artichokes are also packed with many minerals that help with other body functions.
Choose artichokes with a deep green color, tightly packed leaves, and that have a thorn at the tip of each leaf. The leaves should make a squeaking sound when rubbed together. Darkened spots on the stem indicate that the artichoke is old.
Rinse and trim end of artichoke stem and remove outer leaves (if desired).
Steam the artichoke whole in one to two inches of water, for approximately 45 minutes. It is done when the leaves pull away without too much resistance.
Serve with a dipping dish of melted butter (and/or garlic) or your favorite salad dressing.
Pull off a leaf at a time, dip and scrape the meat out between your teeth, discarding the leaf afterwards.
This information has been approved by Clinical Nutrition Services (April 2008). For specific diet information tailored to your needs, we recommend you consult with one of our registered dietitians.