Summer is finally here! Pool parties, beach days, teeny bikinis, fireworks, barbecues! I live for summertime. Last weekend was Memorial Day and we had a lovely time feasting and playing a German card game called Schnautz with our friends on the back deck. A very lazy day. I wanted to make something out of the ordinary for our barbecue, so I went with these grilled artichokes. As my mom always told me, eating an artichoke first makes everything else taste better. I thought it was just a ploy to get me to eat my vegetables, but it turns out to be true! One of the chemical compounds in artichokes, Cynarine, leaves a sweet taste in your mouth.The perfect appetizer! Artichokes have some of the highest antioxidant content of any vegetable. They can help lower your cholesterol and aid digestion. If you have never cooked an artichoke before, don’t worry, it’s really easy!
Lemony Grilled Artichokes
makes 4 servings
2 big artichokes
1/3 cup olive oil
4 cloves garlic, minced
salt and pepper, to taste
a dash of red chili flakes
Bring a big pot of water to a boil. Add the juice from 1 lemon.
Using a pair of scissors, cut the thorny tip off of each of the artichokes leaves, then cut the artichokes into quarters, lengthwise (see pictures.)
Drop the quartered artichokes into the boiling water and boil for 20 minutes.
Pull them out with tongs and set aside.
After they have cooled enough to touch them, gently scrape out the furry little centers with a spoon.
Heat a grill to high heat.
Combine the juice from 2 lemons, olive oil, and garlic. Using a brush, coat the artichokes in the lemon mixture, all over.
Sprinkle with salt and pepper and chili flakes.
Using tongs, lay the artichokes on the hot grill and cook about 4 minutes per side, or until lightly charred. Continue basting with the lemon mixture while they grill.
These are great as they are, but I had a little of the lemon mixture left over, and you can mix in a couple tablespoons of vegan mayo to use as a dipping sauce for the leaves.