Artichokes Are a Nutritional Powerhouse

Artichokes are a lot of work; no two ways about it. But, are they worth it? You bet. They’re surprisingly high in antioxidants and fiber giving them excellent cardiac benefits. They’re high in inulin, a prebiotic that support a healthy gut, and folate, an important nutrient that prevents birth defects, blood disease, and possible cancer.

 

“After all the trouble you go to, you get about as much actual “food” out of eating an artichoke as you would from licking 30 or 40 postage stamps.”  -Miss Piggy

 

Selection:

Choose large artichokes that have densely packed leaves. They’ll have larger hearts than the slim, pointy ones. Artichokes with a thorn at the end of each leaf have a nuttier flavor; and varieties without thorns have softer flesh.

 

Artichokes take almost an hour to cook. So, if you’re looking for a faster but equally nutritious option go with packaged hearts; they’re still high in antioxidants and low in calories. Ideally, purchase them in glass packed in water, olive oil, or a spice mixture.

 

If you see purple artichokes, get them! They’re rich in cancer-fighting compounds anthocyanins which makes them even more nutritious.

Storage:

Keep artichokes refrigerated in the crisper drawer and eat them within three days. They spoil quickly. Artichoke hearts have a longer shelf life