Memories of an Artichoke

When I was little, my Dad traveled a lot for work, and I have two main memories related to his travel:

1. If he had to take an airplane, my Mom and I would take him to O’Hare Airport, and go inside to wave good-bye. This was back when you could go through security and sit with people at the gate (AKA: The Good Ole Days). We would watch him board and I would stand at the big window to wave, even though we couldn’t see each other. Once the plane left, I was sad, and to cheer me up, my Mom would get one of those big, soft pretzels with the cheese dipping sauce, and we would share it. To this day, when I go to the airport, I crave one of those, despite knowing that yellow, processed cheese is one of the worst things I can put into my body. I do have a love of processed cheeses…thanks Mom!

2. When I was a bit older, and perhaps when my Dad drove to his out-of-town destination, my Mom would get a special treat at the grocery store: an artichoke. I would sit in the kitchen and watch her prepare it.  First she cut the tops of the leaves and the stem off. Then she placed it upside down in a pyrex dish with about an inch of water and microwave it for probably 15 minutes. Once done, we would let it sit while she melted butter. I don’t know how long it took us to eat one together, but we dug through it knowing that the real prize was yet to come: the heart. The heart is covered with fuzz, so she would take it back to the cutting board and carefully scrape it all off. She would cut it into 4 pieces and we would dip it in butter, taking tiny bites to make it last longer.

Yesterday I was at Ralph’s and saw that artichokes were on sale for $0.99. I started giggling when I remembered eating them with my mom and decided to get one. I made it last night as a side dish to our dinner- Black Bean Tacos with Corn and Avocado Salsa from the amazing vegan food blog, Little House of Veggies. It’s a strange combo, I admit, but it was a happy meal for me! The corn and avocado salsa is killer- my husband and I once made ourselves sick eating the entire bowl- we could not stop ourselves!

Artichoke ready for steam bath

Artichoke in steam basket with fresh garlic and oregano in water below

Ready to eat with a side of melted Earth Balance

Corn and Avocado Salsa


April 19, 2011. Food.

One Comment

  1. Bekah replied:

    Anything that Katy makes is amazing. Word!!! Corn and avocado salsa is amazing as is the kiwi salsa!!!!

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