Friday, 21 June 2013

Allotment Inheritance

When we got the allotment we noticed two things. One was a closely shaven crop of weeds, the other was the huge ass artichoke plant in the middle. Last year we cut a few of the artichokes off to give to friends, cut down the flowering spikes at the end of the season and then proceeded to do absolutely no maintenance on it.
Looking good (and like an artichoke)

Despite dire warnings it didn't die and this year we are ready with a fresh crop. Despite the insistence of some people it is a fresh crop of artichokes not cardoons.

Let's take a rant break. A man complimented me on my lovely cardoons, I corrected him and told him they where artichokes. He continued to tell me the merits of cardoons. Why he didn't believe me I don't know but our conversation continued in that vein. Considering a t-shirt that says 'despite having boobs I do know my shit' but I suspect I'd wear it out pretty quickly.
Soaked and ready for extensive prep 
Let's get back to me and artichokes. I've had them before, notably at the Riverford Field Kitchen, and I'm okay with them. But as I'm only okay with them and not madly in love the amount of prep that goes into cooking them seems excessive. I've managed to avoid it for a while. But as I'm growing my own I may as well steam some and see what happens.

What happened was this

  • I spent forever chopping off the inedible bits
  • I spent another forever steaming the edible bits
  • by the time they were done I was really hungry
So I did the old gardeners trick of toss random steamed vegetable with pasta (and a little roasted red pepper, possibly some cheese... I forget) and it was... okay.
Now eat, and rest
So the verdict on my inherited artichokes. Well I'm going to keep them around and I may even eat some instead of just forcing them off on friends. It's a stunning plant, I'm glad it's there and I don't think it tastes too bad either.  

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