Artichoke is one of the most popular winter season, delicious vegetable of the Mediterranean origin. Artichoke plant and its benefits are mentioned already in the 4th Century.
In English artichoke is also known as “globe artichoke” which is not same as Jerusalem artichoke eatable vegetable. The globe artichoke has a big purplish green head, and thick round leaves when young and unopened, it can be cooked together with its meaty leaves and delicious middle part or “heart” of artichoke which is a delicatessen. Botanically, it belongs to the thistle family (Asteraceae), in the genus; Cynara. Scientific name: Cyanara Scolymus. Globe artichoke grows up to 1.5-2 m tall. Beautiful pink flowers develop in a large head from the edible buds.
The edible, fleshy portions, including the heart, are rich in nutrients and the extract of artichoke leaves are popular for a long time for its positive effects on the liver, gallbladder and to lower cholesterol levels and for improving digestion. In general, the globe artichokes promotes good health and provides the following health benefits:
- It helps with upset stomach.
- Rich in dietary fibre, artichokes helps improve digestion.
- Lovers cholesterol level.
- It can help in balancing sugar levels in the blood.
- The high quantities of potassium in the vegetable help to maintain normal heart rhythm.
- The artichoke is rich in phytonutrients and antioxidants. This helps to boost the body’s immunity against diseases.
How to Cook Artichokes
You can prepare artichokes in many ways, from steaming to stuffing them with tasty ingredients. Ideally use stainless-steel knives and cookware when cooking artichokes, since carbon steel, aluminum and cast iron will discolour the vegetable within moments of cutting. To find out how to prepare artichokes, please view the video below.