Help! My almost 9YO wants artichokes for his birthday dinner next week!
I know they aren't exactly in-season, but that is his request and he's been reminding me for a few months now. I'm not exactly sure what it's based on, but he has developed this sudden desire to try artichokes, not cooked artichoke hearts, but the whole one you might order as a baked or stuffed appetizer with clarified butter, for example. Where the heck can I go to get him this??!?!?
I'm in Central MA with reasonable access to Routes 190, 2, 3, 290, 495, I-90, etc. I'm not interested in going into Boston on his birthday, but we'll be there for a show this weekend anyway and we could celebrate with his artichoke dinner a couple of days early if I knew I could secure reservations to work around our show schedule.
Begging for help -- you only turn 9 once!!
Why don't you make them for him at home? It's easy and could be part of a fun birthday celebration. Cut off the stems and ~1 inch of the tops of the leaves. Steam over water with a couple of tablespoons of wine vinegar added for ~40 minutes. Serve w/melted butter.
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re: Science Chick
Thanks, Science Chick. That might end up being my solution, but we have a tradition of eating dinner out for birthdays and that's what he was looking for - to combine his dinner out with the artichoke thing. It isn't always easy to make sense of what is going on in his 9YO brain, but I'm pretty sure that he wouldn't view artichokes made at home quite the same as letting him order them at his birthday dinner in a restaurant!! Thanks for the pointer, though, it'll come in handy if I end up having to cook them on another night.
I agree that this is a dish best done at home. And if you have a pressure cooker, (and Lord knows that every kitchen should have at least one), you can cut the time by almost a third. Prep the artichokes as discussed above, and add chicken broth, olive oil, butter, crushed garlic cloves and any other herbs you might like to th pressure cooker and cook for 15-18 minutes. The pressure infuses the artichoke with flavor, and the liquid remaining in the pot when the cooking is done becomes your sauce. Or, at least, the base for your sauce.
By the way, this is a favorite of my ten year-old and has been for several years. So you are not alone with a kid who loves artichokes!