skip to Main Content

How To Trim An Artichoke/Artichoke Risotto

How To Trim An Artichoke/Artichoke Risotto

If you’ve never had risotto made with fresh artichokes, get out there now that artichokes are in season and so reasonably priced. Sure you can use frozen artichokes and the result would be good (don’t try the canned ones for this recipe) but fresh artichokes elevates this to a different level. Wegman’s Supermarket recently had artichokes on sale at 2 for $1.00 – a real bargain. The low price gave me the incentive to try something besides the stuffed artichoke recipe that’s a standard in our house. Trimming the artichokes does take a little time, but you’ll be rewarded with the unparalleled flavor of fresh artichokes.  I’ll take you through the process, step-by-step. First slice off the top 1/2 to 1/3 of the leaves. Reserve all those pieces you chop off. I’ll show you what to do with them later. May 2010 216 Then peel away the lower level or two of leaves. May 2010 217 Using a sharp knife, start slicing through the woodier portion of the leaf and leave only the more tender parts of the artichoke. May 2010 218 Slice off most of the stem. May 2010 219 Take a smaller knife and trim the remaining stem and the bottom of the artichoke. May 2010 220 This is what you’ll be left with. In Italy, you see vendors at outdoor markets trimming baskets full of artichokes and selling them already cleaned for you. May 2010 221 Next I slice open the artichoke and you’ll see the fuzzy choke inside. May 2010 222 Take a grapefruit spoon and remove the choke. May 2010 223 Here’s what it looks like when it’s fully trimmed. You have to work fast since as you can see, the artichoke starts to turn brown quickly. Don’t worry about that too much. Once you cook it, it won’t matter. May 2010 224 For risotto, I sliced the artichoke in thin pieces. In Italy you can buy really tender artichokes – so tender that slices like these are tossed with olive and vinegar and served raw in salads, with shaved parmesan cheese. May 2010 225 Put the sliced artichokes in a bowl of water that has half a lemon squeezed into it to help stop discoloration. These are now ready for your risotto recipe. May 2010 226 Oh yeah, what to do with all those leaves and bits you trimmed? May 2010 227 Put them in a pot of water and get them boiling while you prepare the beginning of the risotto recipe. You’ll use this broth in the risotto. It adds a lot of flavor, even though it will cook for only 20 minutes or so. May 2010 229 OK, now let’s get the risotto going. Start out by sauteeing the shallot and the garlic until limp. Drain the artichoke slices and add them to the vegetables, along with some white wine and a little chicken stock. You don’t really even need the chicken stock. I just happen to have a little left over from some soup made earlier in the week. Use water if you don’t have stock.  Keep the artichokes covered in liquid and in about 15-20 minutes they’ll be cooked through. May 2010 228 Now just follow the standard risotto technique. Add the rice and a little bit of the hot artichoke broth. Stir and let the liquid get absorbed before adding more ladles of broth. Keep doing that for about 20 minutes or until the risotto is cooked but not mushy. I add the fresh herbs after turning off the heat, in order to retain maximum flavor and the bright green color. May 2010 230 Top with parmesan cheese and enjoy! May 2010 234  Artichoke Risotto (enough for two to three people) Printable recipe here 2 fresh artichokes, trimmed and sliced 1 shallot, minced finely 2 cloves crushed garlic 1 1/2 cup arborio rice 2 T. olive oil 1 T. butter 1/2 cup white wine 1/2 cup chicken broth (I just happened to have this leftover from something else but you can use water if you don’t have it) broth from artichoke leaves (about four or five cups) minced fresh herbs (thyme, parsley is what I used) salt, pepper to taste 1 T. butter parmesan cheese Trim the artichokes and put all the trimmings in a pot of water. Boil it on high heat for 15-20 minutes. Meanwhile, get the risotto going. Place the butter and olive oil in a pan and add the shallots and garlic. Cook until limp, then add the artichoke pieces, the white wine and chicken broth. Simmer over medium heat until artichoke pieces are almost cooked through – this will take about 15 minutes. Season with salt and pepper. Stir in the rice and keep adding some broth from the pot you’re cooking containing the discarded artichoke leaves and water. Continue adding this broth and stirring the risotto until the rice is cooked (about 20 minutes). Remove from heat. Stir in the fresh herbs, the 1 T. butter and the parmesan cheese. Serve.

This Post Has 34 Comments
  1. what an informative post on trimming artichokes and at 2 for a buck I will keep my eyes open for this deal so that I can trim some up so nice an neat…I usually just go the steamed route so as not to lose a single leaf.

  2. Your way to trimming artichokes is so much better than the way I've been doing it. Thanks for the excellent tutorial, Linda. And how very smart to make stock out of the trimmings. Excellent post. Thanks.

  3. This is one of my least favorite chores, though the end result is so worth it!
    I needed you last week to help me trim artichokes so perfectly!

  4. Thanks so much for the step-by-step instructions with pics for trimming artichokes. I love artichokes, but had no idea how to do that. Unfortunately, the best price I've seen around here is 2 for $5.

  5. I like your tutorial on how to trim artichokes, Linda. I've attempted it without much success in the past. I also like the idea of not wasting the parts you trim off. Making a artichoke infusion for the risotto is a wonderful idea!

    I wish there were a Wegmans Supermarket nearby. The stores near me have artichokes priced $3 each! They would still be a bargain cooked this way.

  6. Thank you for the step by step tutorial. I am intimidated by artichokes but will definitely try trimming them myself. Your risotto looks perfect!

  7. Linda, the post is so informative but I cannot keep anything in my head because I keep hearing, "2 for $1.00!" I think each artichoke is $3-4 here. I shall go back and visit again when the dollar signs in my head clear – and I stop wondering if it's worth it to fly to the east coast to get artichokes. I do love the waste-not in this recipe and making a broth from the tougher leaves. Brava. If I lived closer, I'd be on your porch.

  8. Unfortunately I have been busy and haven't been able to catch up on my favourite blogs. You have recently posted some fantastic recipes and thoughts. It's 9.30am and I'm starving for risotto (artichoke and the pea one) spaghetti con i frutti del mare (YUM) and orange cake. OMG! This sounds like the best menu! Thanks! Great dishes! And love your post on Lawn to Food!

  9. I'm whimpering for a few reasons. I live right by the artichoke capitol of the world (Castroville, CA). Seeing those leaves cut off…aaaack! I love to dip those in aioli sauce. Then again, the sacrifice to make this risotto makes me whimper more. I need to make risotto more often. Linda, I'm gonna make this. Pinkie promise. Dee-lish!

  10. Artichokes are my favorite, favorite vegetable! I get excited when I see anything made with them, and get delirious when they're 2 for $1.00. I love your broth idea and will keep that in mind, so much more added flavor. Love your risotto!! I have never tried a raw salad yet, but want to after seeing Lidia do it.

  11. You absolutely have won the "Blog of the Day" award. This was a terrific post. It's Helpful, informative and delivers a delicious risotto. My compliments. Have a great day. Blessings… Mary

  12. Thank you! You too eat the stem…somne folks don't know they are throwing out some good eats!

    On to the risotto…even the leaves are in here….total flavour, total Spring.

  13. These artichokes are so pretty! I've been going with frozen hearts for many, many months and am excited for fresh artichokes. Thanks for the tips on trimming. This risotto sounds perfect!

  14. thanks for steps Linda, I also never worried too much about the artichokes become brown. For me, it is the taste that is count. Your risotto looks perfect!

  15. superb demonstration of how to clean an artichoke! The risotto looks delicious… and I love the plates!

  16. Just bought artichokes and was going to try creating a new recipe, but I think I will use them for the one you already created. I bet it's just delicious. It will give my brain a rest, I will use your brain instead.

  17. Awesome Linda! I've always been intimidated by fresh artichokes. This is the perfect guide for dummies like me 🙂 And the risotto looks amazing!

  18. I am not a fancy chef. I have three kids and a really low budget. I happened to get eight baby artichokes at the local food pantry give away. I fallowed your recipe and it was great! The kids thought it was green been casserole and I got to eat a classy adult meal.

  19. I am not a fancy chef. I have three kids and a really low budget. I happened to get eight baby artichokes at the local food pantry give away. I fallowed your recipe and it was great! The kids thought it was green been casserole and I got to eat a classy adult meal.

  20. Artichokes 101! This is exactly what I need. I love seeing every step, and the photographs are so clear! It is great to be taught by a master. Thanks!

Comments are closed.