One of the things I love at this time of year is seeing all the more seasonal vegetables appearing. As you might have seen, we get pretty into asparagus (whether it’s in a tomato asparagus quiche or simple roasted asparagus with parmesan). I also love artichokes, although we have them much less often. Part of that is they’re a little fiddly, but for now and then, these grilled artichokes are definitely worth the effort.
When I first moved to Spain many years ago, I remember seeing these great big bushy plants as I got the train into Barcelona and then on to where I was living. I kept seeing them, but since I was nearly always passing in a train or car, it was a while until I could figure out that they were artichoke plants. Artichokes are a popular crop there, and it’s also where I learned the simple Spanish way of preparing them by boiling and serving with aioli. Since then, I am always up for having them now and then.
How they’re made
Artichokes can seems bit fiddly, but as long as you go in with the mindset that they take a little more effort to prepare and eat than say a root vegetable, you’ll be fine. It’s not difficult at all. While these artichokes are grilled, you still need to pre-cook them as they won’t cook through enough on the grill alone – the grilling is more to give them a great flavor finish. First you prepare them by cutting in half, trimming and removing the fuzzy center before boiling or steaming. Toss with the basil, garlic and oil mixture and then either grill there and then or leave to allow the flavors to get in a bit more. Then peel off the leaves and enjoy.
I know these grilled artichokes might be a little fiddly, but it’s a minor sacrifice you need to make now and then. Because these are really tasty, and I hope you’ll find out for yourself soon.
These might be a little fiddly to eat, but they are most definitely worth the effort.
- 2 artichokes or 3, if smaller
- 3 tbsp olive oil
- 2 tbsp lemon juice
- 1 tbsp chopped fresh basil
- 2 cloves garlic (or 1 large)
Prepare the artichokes by cutting them in half from top to bottom, through the core. Using a small spoon, remove the fuzzy center. Peel the outside skin from the stems and if you like, trim the ends off the outside leaves (but you can leave if you like, you just can't eat anything from that part).
Boil or steam the artichokes until tender, around 20 minutes. Drain then toss with the olive oil, lemon juice, basil and garlic.
You can either grill them straight away or leave them to take on the flavors a bit more. When ready to grill, warm the grill then cook a couple minutes either side until lightly charred.
Enjoy as they are or also good with a little aioli or other mild dip/sauce to dip in.To eat them, you peel off the leaves and pull away the flesh from the bottom with your teeth. As you get closer to the middle, you'll get more tender flesh then you can eat the heart.
Why not try these artichokes alongside one of these grilled mains:
Welcome to #BBQWeek
Let’s fire up the grill! Follow #BBQWeek so you don’t miss one delicious recipe. There are more than 20 recipes this week including today’s tasty dishes:
- Asian Inspired Pork Kebabs from A Day in the Life on the Farm
- Brats with Grilled Corn Relish from Jolene’s Recipe Journal
- Grilled Artichokes from Caroline’s Cooking (you’re here!)
- Grilled Chicken Bacon Ranch Sandwiches from Tip Garden
- Marinated Lamb Chops from A Kitchen Hoor’s Adventures
- Shish Tawook (Lebanese Chicken Skewers) from Culinary Adventures with Camilla
- Tandoori Chicken Tikka with Masala Grilled Corn from Palatable Pastime