Steamed Artichokes

It’s June 1 and these are the last of our artichokes. We had two plants: a Roma and a Violetta (instead of the usual Green Globe). I harvested the first flowerhead of each plant in early May. These are the secondary heads.

This has been an experiment. I tried a few times before. Each plant was in a medium container (10 gallons). They required daily watering and twice-weekly fertilizer. It is a lot of work for 6 artichokes!

The internet suggests that boil/steam is slightly better than microwaving. Marie has used the microwave method for 30 years and it tastes the same. This recipe is a version from Bobby Flay.


  • 3 to 4 artichokes
  • 1 lemon
  • tablespoon salt
  • tablespoon herbs (thyme, basil, oregano)

Preparing the Artichokes

  • Prepare the artichokes (Cut off the top half-inch of the artichoke using a knife; Remove the small outer leaves; snip off the thorny tops using scissors; run water over the chokes to flush out any critters)

The Boil/Steam method

  • In a large pot (a spaghetti pot) add two inches of water and start boiling
  • Add juice of one lemon, a tablespoon salt, the prepared artichokes, and maybe a tablespoon of some herbs like thyme
  • Cover and steam for 25 to 40 minutes (starting checking every 5 minutes after 20)

The Microwave Steam method

  • Wrap the artichokes in plastic and seal firmly
  • Microwave for 5 minutes
  • Check for doneness by sticking fork into bottom. If the fork goes in easily then the artichoke is done. Else microwave for 2 more minutes and repeat.

After the cooking

  • Let cool and then cut in half vertically
  • Scoop out  and discard the fiberous material above the artichoke heart
  • If grilling, add oil dressing then grill  4 minutes on the cut side and then 2 minutes on the uncut side
  • Dip your artichoke in your dressings (butter, mayo, etc)

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