It’s artichoke season again, and I’ve already made these Mediterranean Style Steamed Artichokes twice.
Ok, maybe it’s the Hollandaise Sauce that is the draw, but seriously, these have so much flavor, you really don’t even need the Hollandaise! A sprinkle of a good quality Balsamic vinegar goes really well with them. (This post was originally posted on May 21st 2012 with my blender hollandaise. I’ve republished, separating the two recipes.) This post contains affiliate links for you convenience.
Artichokes remind me of my teenage years. My dad would take my brother and me out every Friday night to the same restaurant, and we’d have exactly the same dinner, a spinach salad and steamed artichokes with Hollandaise. My dad would always “pay” me to clean his “heart” for him, by giving me half.
Artichokes are a great source of fiber
You can already guess that artichokes are a zero fat food, but did you know they are fiber rich? Think about it, you eat them by scraping the leaf off with your teeth! A large artichoke contains nearly 6 grams of fiber, folate, magnesium and vitamin c. (Nutritional info from the California Artichoke Advisory Board)
How to prepare artichokes
This method is one I learned in cooking school and is purely for aesthetics.
After washing the artichoke, slice the bottom of the stem off, and make a cross.
With a sharp knife, cut the very top of the artichoke off. Next, with sharp kitchen shears, snip the top 1/4 of each leaf.
How to steam artichokes
There are various methods for preparing artichokes, but I prefer steaming. Yes, it takes about 45 minutes, but once you get them going, you can forget about them. After preparing each artichoke, separate the leaves as much as possible.
This allows the herbs and seasonings to get down inside of the leaves. Place a simple steamer basket like this one, or a small metal trivet in a large pot filled with water just until touching the bottom of the basket.
Be generous with the seasonings. Try and get them down into the leaves. Drizzle with olive oil and cover pot. Steam artichokes for approximately 45 minutes, or until a leaf pulls away easily and is tender.
Serve artichokes with a drizzle of Balsamic vinegar or this easy One Minute Hollandaise Sauce.
How to clean the artichoke heart
Eat or remove leaves until you reach the soft purple “thistle”. Pinch the thistle portion and pull.
Most of the thistle should come up. Scrape or clean the heart of all the spiky bits. I like to use a grapefruit spoon with a serrated edge to do this. Trim the bottom and sides. Dip the artichoke in more Balsamic or Hollandaise sauce.
Some of the items used in this post are available on my Amazon store for your convenience.
Mediterranean Style Steamed Artichokes
- 4 artichokes, washed and trimmed
- 1 Tablespoon Oregano, dried
- 1 Tablespoon Thyme, dried
- 2 teaspoons rosemary, dried
- 4 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 lemon, juiced
- 1/4 cup olive oil
- 2 teaspoons kosher salt
- 2 teaspoons black pepper
- Trim the bottom and very top leaves of each artichoke. With sharp shears, cut the top 1/4 of each artichoke leaf (optional). Make a cross in the bottom of each artichoke.
- Mix herbs, salt and pepper in a small bowl.
- Fit a steamer basket or metal trivet in the bottom of a large pot. Fill pot with water, just until touching the bottom of the basket.
- Place artichokes on the trivet or steamer basket. Separate the leaves and sprinkle the herbs in between and over the artichokes. Drizzle with lemon juice and olive oil.
- Bring water to a boil, then reduce heat to a low simmer and cover. Steam artichokes, checking water level periodically, adding more if necessary. Steam for approximately 40-45 minutes, or until leaves are tender and pull away easily. Serve with a drizzle of Balsamic vinegar or Hollandaise sauce.
Looking for more artichoke recipes?
This Mediterranean Quinoa Salad has artichoke hearts, olives and tomatoes.
Jovina Coughlin says
One of my favorites.
Mine too! It’s such a short season.
Jill @ Mad About Macarons says
Oh, I adore artichokes and they’re in season here in Paris too, Cynthia. Great instructions! My girls have always loved dipping the leaves into vinaigrette – and it’s so low in calories too, as well as taking the time to eat it. Perfect!
I do too! I buy them fresh in season, but I buy them marinated year round!
Mmmm! I love artichokes! And this looks like a fantastic recipe…with or without hollandaise! Yum!
Yep! Hollandaise makes everything taste delicious!
colleen kennedy says
Saving this/ I have been wanting to try my hand at artichokes. I’ve kinds fell for them the past 5 years or so. Never once had them growing up, lol! Thanks for the instruction!
I started eating them waayyyy back in the 60’s and 70’s. They were my dad’s favorite too.
i have never made a fresh artichoke! I love them so much (and Hollandaise sauce) I really need to try these!
Ooh, I love them so much! They take a while to cook…but I think it’s worth it!
Artichokes are on of my favorites! So healthy and delicious as well. I LOVE how you’ve given the a Mediterranean flare too.
Mine too Heidy! I love the hearts!
I have a bunch of artichokes on hand. Can’t wait to try!
I started growing some, but I’m not sure if I’ll get anything this year!
Susan Garrett says
So incredibly delish! I mixed balsamic vinegar with a little Mayo to dip leaves in and set a platter up at a College of Charleston Student house and nobody knew what it was, after I explained and the students tried it, now is a favorite and I am asked to make whenever artichokes are available.
So glad you liked them! I know they’re a lot of work to eat, but I’ve always loved taking my time over an artichoke!