I was at the West Hollywood (Fairfax/SantaMonica) Whole Foods this morning, and they had cardoons (labeled in Italian, "cardoni").
Just wanted to let everyone know.
I have never seen cardoons in LA before, and so bought a bunch and while they are a bit of work just finished eating them: completely delicious.
My grandfather used to pick them from the empty lot next to the house where I grew up. However even at Whole Foods, they are not expensive to buy.
So now this has me thinking of other Italian rareties.
I've posted on this before: Has anyone seen anyone selling anywhere "puntarelle" in LA?
Roman salad green, related to chicory.
Here is a photo:
Here is a blog coming out of SF where it is discussed, I guess you can buy it up there.
I literally dream about this green, dressed with anchovies and garlic....
I'm thinking about applying for a patch in the nearby community garden so I can start to grow it. But has anyone seen it? Anywhere?
puntarelle are really hard to find. i know of only one grower i california (aside from Andy, obviously). He's an Italian guy who grows a lot of radicchio up in Salinas and a few other places. he keeps a couple of plots of puntarelle going during the winter, basically just because he likes it (i think he sells most of it in japan!). the last time i heard from him, he said that all'Angelo was doing puntarelle some Wednesday nights. might be worth giving them a call.
Thanks for this information. I've emailed All'Angelo. I have a reservation there coming up, my first visit, anyway.
Puntarelle had caught on in NYC, a little bit, before I moved here four years ago. They were selling them in Union Square market. Wonder what we can do to get them to catch on here.
I've seen it at Claro's but that was quite a while ago so I don't know if they still have it (if not they might be able to get it for you.)
I buy dandelion greens each week at the Hollywood Farmers Market. I get bigger leaves, for blanching and sauteeing, but I've seen younger, smaller shoots at one stand. You could probably talk to one of the growers and maybe he/she can get it for you.
Punterelle dressed with garlic and anchovies is the best!