I just love artichokes. They are a thistle, and grow quite easily here in the Western Cape. You can let them flower until beautiful and purple, or you can pick them when they are ripe and ready to eat.

Flowering Artichoke

Many people do not know how to prepare them, and really, they are simple and easy. We only get the mature vegetable here, but I have to admit to preferring the soft young ones we get in France and Italy as they are nicer to cook with and easier to incorporate into a meal. You can serve the leaves with an hollandaise sauce, a plain mayonnaise or even lemon butter sauce. Be patient and enjoy the leaves, as it is the heart you really want! That is the best part of a mature artichoke but do take care to get all the thistles out before eating it. This is a meal that reminds me of my mother. She uses a pressure cooker and it is something we ate when my dad was away.

Do you eat artichokes?



Recipe Category: Vegetarian
Makes enough for: 2 people
All Rights Reserved: Adapted from From Nature To Plate page 100


  • 4 artichokes
  • 30 mls lemon juice


  • Remove the tough outer leaves and snap off the stalk
  • Bring the largest pot to the boil - if possible not an aluminium or iron one as this is what causes the artichokes to discolour
  • Add the lemon juice and the artichokes
  • Place a plate on top of the artichokes to keep them submerged
  • Simmer uncovered for 40 minutes
  • Drain well

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