The artichoke has many nutritional benefits. Moderately caloric (47 kcal / 100 g), the secret of its lightness lies in the nature of its carbohydrates (1 g / 100 g of cooked food). Almost half of them consist of inulin, a carbohydrate composed of fructose that is only found in certain fruits and vegetables (Jerusalem artichokes, salsify, etc.), and which helps reduce its caloric value. inulin that the artichoke has this special sweet taste.
Artichoke, a natural drainer
Detox food par excellence, the artichoke has a high potassium content (342 mg / 100 g) which makes it diuretic. This effect is enhanced by the presence of inulin which increases the elimination of urine. On the other hand, carbohydrate little assimilable by the body, inulin sometimes makes artichoke difficult to digest. When consumed in too much quantity, it can cause intestinal disorders (bloating, gas…).
Despite this reserve, the artichoke contributes to regulate intestinal transit. Its asset: its high fiber content (5.4 g / 100 g). Made up of complex carbohydrates, these are not transformed during digestion and thus remain in the intestine, whose function they stimulate.
How to choose the right artichokes?
When you do your shopping, prefer artichokes firm, heavy, with leaves of uniform color and tight together. Beware if the leaves have a black tip and are open: this is a sign that the picking goes back some time. The vegetable will then be overripe, so hard with a lot of hay.
Finally, check the color of the product. It exists two large families of artichokes : the whites (Camus, Castel …), to choose without spots, or violets (pepper …).
When to eat artichokes?
The artichoke is a vegetable that can be eaten all year round. However, if we refer to the calendar of the site lesfruitsetlegumesfrais.com, the high season of the artichoke is spread out between the months of March and September. We therefore invite you to consume it as a priority during this period.
The different ways of preserving artichoke
To keep raw artichokes for a few days, immerse their rod in water as for a bouquet of flowers. After cooking, avoid keeping them too long. Even in the refrigerator, the cooked artichoke oxidizes quickly (often after 24 hours). He can thus produce toxic substances and put you at risk of food poisoning …
Fortunately, there are ways to store it after cooking:
- THE’whole artichoke or just funds can be sterilized. For home use, put the potted vegetables in a mixture of water, lemon and olive oil.
- It is also possible to freeze the vegetable. After cooking in lemon water (so that it keeps a vibrant color), place it in a freezer bag and in the freezer.
How to cook the artichoke?
Before passing the artichoke “in the pan”, follow a few steps. First remove its tail. Be careful, do not cut it with a knife. Break it to remove the fibers that go to the heart. If the outer leaves are damaged, remove them : they are not very endowed with flesh.
The artichoke can then be cooked in salted water for 20 to 40 minutes, immersed whole (to prevent it from blackening), or steamed for about ten minutes, depending on its size. Drain the artichoke upside down and thin it to the core. Finally, remove the hay located around the heart because it cannot be eaten.
To prevent your artichokes from darkening, you can definitely add a squeeze of lemon in the cooking water. To discover other tips, discover the article from our partner Régal.fr on how to cook artichokes properly.
Preparation tips and recipes
Artichokes can be eaten in different ways. The easiest way is to rub the inner base of each leaf between your teeth, then taste the heart of nature, cold, warm or hot, with a little salt or with a sauce (béchamel, vinaigrette or fromage blanc and herbs).
You can also integrate the artichoke (the heart) in a salad, pasta, rice … Or, prepare a gratin, a mash, a pie Where a salty cake based on this vegetable. It is also possible to stuff the artichoke with vegetables or meat (beef, poultry…), and why not with crab, shrimps, mussels, tuna…
Source: Handles (National Food Safety Agency).