Tuesday, April 16, 2013

Oven Caramelized Jerusalem Artichokes

Jerusalem Artichokes

Jerusalem Artichokes are neither from Jerusalem, nor are they Artichokes... discuss! (With a nod to Coffee Talk, Mike Myers as Linda Richman and SNL.) The Jerusalem Artichoke, aka Sunchoke, Sunroot or Earth Apple, most likely got the Jerusalem part of its name from Girasole [gi-ra-só-le], the Italian word for Sunflower. The Artichoke part of the name, however probably comes from its similar taste to the not yet bloomed thistle we know as a Globe Artichoke.

Too many people pass these tasty little morsels by in the produce department because of their appearance and a simple lack of experience with them. So unfair! They’re available during the winter months, when really decent Globe Artichokes are not in season, so any fan of the thistle variety can get their fix of the distinctive taste of an Artichoke throughout the year. They’re also a lot easier to prepare!

Jerusalem Artichokes, like the Artichoke Heart, have a myriad of uses depending upon the cooking method applied. My favorite however is this simple oven roasting procedure that produces a sweet treat that’s a great side dish or a perfect finger food.

Oven Caramelized Jerusalem Artichokes
Serves: 4     Preparation Time: 1 Hour     Cooking Time: 45 Minutes


• 2 Pounds Jerusalem Artichokes
• 2 Teaspoons Lemon Juice
• ¼ Cup Olive Oil
• 1 Teaspoon Kosher Salt
• 1 Teaspoon Freshly Ground Black Pepper

Preparation Steps

Step 1. Rinse the Jerusalem Artichokes under running water and rub to remove any obvious surface grit.

Step 2. Put the Artichokes in a large bowl, add enough Cold Water to cover and add Lemon Juice. Let the Jerusalem Artichokes soak for about 45 minutes.

Step 3.
Scrub the soaked Artichokes with a vegetable brush to remove any loosened dirt. Trim ⅛” off the cut end and the tips of any nodules that appear rough or “dirty”. Cut each Artichoke in half lengthwise and return to the Cold Water/Lemon bath.

Step 4. Preheat oven to 350ºF

Step 5. In a large bowl, whisk together the Olive Oil, Kosher Salt and Freshly Ground Black Pepper. Drain the Artichokes, dry them with a towel and add them to the Olive Oil mixture. Toss to coat completely and dump the entire contents of the bowl onto a large baking sheet turning each Artichoke cut side down. Roast for 45 minutes on the center rack of the oven.

Step 6.
When done, let them cool for a couple of minutes and then use a metal pancake turner to transfer to a serving platter.

Serve alone as you would with roasted potatoes or with your favorite Artichoke dipping sauce.


Tips and Trending

~ If you want a firmer bite to the Jerusalem Artichokes, remove them from the over after 30 minutes – they won’t be fully caramelized, but they will be fully cooked.

~ Aioli is my go to dipping sauce for any kind of artichoke, but you can also use ½ cup of clarified butter whisked with 1 teaspoon of lemon juice and a clove of garlic mashed with ⅛ teaspoon of Kosher Salt.

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