Artichoke Varietal Question: Round vs. Conical, Tough vs. Tender?
- Funwithfood May 9, 2011 09:01 PM
I've always purchased smaller/conical artichokes and they've been tender and delicious.
At the market I found very large round//flatter artichokes and cooked them along with the first (more conical) ones. The larger rounder/flat artichokes were tough & leathery by comparison (even though a fork went into the stem easily when steamed).
For those who are "artichoke savvy", are these different varietals or just old/tough artichokes? And, can "leathery" artichokes be made soft if cooked...a second time, or are they hopeless?
My rounder ones were HUGE, very heavy and tight leaves so they were fresh. Are larger artichokes generally tougher? I've never noticed this "toughness" with the conical shaped ones.
Anyway, I've got a bunch of marinated artichokes that are leathery :(. I guess I could test one...perhaps microwave it for a while, then grill it and see how it tastes...?
I get the globular ones in season because here in LA County they're typically sold with looooong stems. Steam and peel the whole thing and it's like having a foot-long artichoke heart! But I agree that the 'chokes themselves are much meatier in the pointy variety, and I think their flavor is more interesting too.