Roman Jewish Special Recipe: Artichokes Soup

Artichokes are so versatile to use. You can grill it, fry it (a favorite) or you can make it into soup. This recipe uses artichokes with lemon for a soup that is full of flavor. It makes a good side dish, or can be enjoyed as a meal in itself.

What you need

  • Butter, 2 oz.
  • Lemon, halved, 1 pc.
  • Garlic, minced, 1 clove
  • Carrots, minced, 4 oz.
  • Onion, minced, 4 oz.
  • Celery minced 4 oz.
  • Artichoke hearts, chopped, 16 oz.
  • Chicken broth, 24 oz.
  • Salt, 1 tsp.
  • Black pepper, ground, 1 tsp.

Preparation

  1. In a saucepan, melt butter over medium heat;
  2. When melted, add in the onion, carrot, celery and garlic;
  3. Cook until the onion and garlic seem translucent;
  4. Pour in the chicken broth and the artichoke hearts;
  5. Season with salt and pepper and let it simmer for 10 minutes;
  6. Cool it for a bit, then transfer to a blender;
  7. Puree it until smooth, then return to the saucepan;
  8. Squeeze into the pan the half of the lemon;
  9. And the other half, put it inside the pan;
  10. After it boils, reduce heat, and let it simmer for 10 minutes.

You can use fresh artichokes or even its canned versions.

You can also choose not to put it in the blender. It will give your soup more texture.

For some, they use only half of a lemon to avoid the lemon taste overpowering everything else.

Cooking artichokes

Aside from using it to make soup, here are a few more common recipes for artichokes.

  1. Deep-fried artichokes;
  2. Roasted artichokes;
  3. Grilled artichokes;
  4. Stuffed artichokes;
  5. Use as any other vegetable in stews or salads.

Tips in cleaning the artichokes

  1. Cut off the top part, about 2 inches;
  2. Use a pair of scissors and cut off the pointed ends of each leaf;
  3. Use your left hand to hold the artichoke on its bottom, and use your right hand fingers to fan out the leaves so they would separate;
  4. You can then remove the inner leaves which are light green with purple tips;
  5. You will then find the choke in the middle. It is hard to miss. It is fuzzy, hairy and white, and you can use a spoon to scoop it out;
  6. Once the choke is removed, you will see the artichoke’s heart. If you are not cooking your vegetable immediately, you can dribble some lemon juice into the heart to keep it from discoloring;
  7. Slice off about 2 inches on the bottom part.

Health value of artichokes

Artichokes are versatile to cook, and it is also healthy to eat. The next time you put one aside, you will be missing out on these benefits:

  • Protects from cancer;
  • Boosts immune system;
  • Lowers cholesterol;
  • Protects against heart attack and stroke;
  • Detoxes the body, particularly the liver;
  • Aids digestion and helps ease constipation and diarrhea;
  • Reduces blood pressure;
  • Stimulates urine;
  • Eliminates hang-overs.

Its nutritional value includes fiber (22%), vitamin C (20%), vitamin K (18%) and folate (17%), plus others more.

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