This exquisite, healthy vegetable offers many health benefits.
The artichoke is bursting with vitamins including several B
vitamins - B1, B2, B3, B4, B5 and B6.
This vegetable also contains vitamin C, vitamin E and vitamin K
which are essential to our health and vitality as they
significantly encourage and improve bodily functions.
important vitamins found in artichokes can energize the body,
making us feel more alert and energetic. The vitamin C content
in artichokes assist the immune system by strengthening it which
in turn helps us to ward off colds, flu, illness and major
Artichoke is recognized for its
therapeutic and healing qualities and it can even reduce blood
pressure and cholesterol levels, aid the digestive system by
helping it to break down fat, and relieve water retention.
Another great benefit of artichokes is that eating them can help
to keep the liver protected. The artichoke provides many
nutrients including beta-carotene, calcium, iron, potassium and
Artichokes are low in calories, they are full of
goodness and vitality! The amount of calories in artichoke
depends on the way that this vegetable is cooked, for example if
the artichoke is baked, grilled, roasted, steamed or boiled. The
following calorie guide can be used to calculate the amount of
calories in artichokes:
Artichoke Calories per
Boiled Globe Artichoke base, leave and
heart - 18 calories
Boiled Jerusalem Artichoke flesh - 41 calories
Artichoke is a large, healthy vegetable that is either purple or
green in color. Artichoke grows on stalks and looks different,
perhaps a little unusual. The tight leaves form the shape of a
globe. The inner leaves are tightly wrapped around the centre of
the artichoke. The actual artichoke is the unopened flower bud
of a perennial plant. Each individual artichoke bud consists of
tough outer leaves. The tips are hard and inedible. The base is
quite the opposite as it's tender and fleshy. The leaves are
wrapped tightly around the heart of the artichoke. The heart is
also known as the thistle or choke as it is a part of the flower
bud and it looks like a cone of light colored leaves.
The History of Artichoke
This is a unique and interesting vegetable that originated in
the Mediterranean. The artichoke is sometimes confused with
cardoons which are closely related but are an uncultivated form
of artichoke that were commonly grown in Southern Europe. It is
believed that the artichoke first became popular in Italy. This
green, healthy vegetable is grown in many European countries as
well as other parts of the world. This vegetable is widely grown
in France in the area of Brittany.
Picking and Storing Artichoke
Eat artichokes as soon as possible after buying them as the
nutritional content will be at its highest. Artichoke can be
stored for 2-3 days in the refrigerator if necessary. Try to
pick lively and vibrant looking artichokes that are as fresh as
possible with tight leaves.
Preparing Artichoke for Cooking and Eating
Remove the stalk by twisting it off. Chop the bases flat and
remove any little leaves from the base. Spiky leaves can be
trimmed slightly. Wash the artichoke under cold running water.
Place the artichoke in a pan of water and add the juice of half
a lemon to the water. Cook larger sized artichokes in simmering
water for approximately 30-40 minutes, or until tender. Smaller
varieties will take less time to boil. To check if the artichoke
is cooked properly, pull off an artichoke leaf. If it's cooked
properly, the leaf should pull away easily and the base of it
should be tender. Other alternative cooking methods that are
suitable for this vegetable include steaming, baking and
Artichoke is great served with a dip or sauce,
such as a vinaigrette dip or garlic butter dip which are very
suited to this vegetable and compliment it lovely. There are
many artichoke recipes bursting with health benefits and
nutrition to try such as stuffed artichoke!