Wednesday, May 5, 2010

Artichokes and Hollandaise Sauce

While cruising around aimlessly in the grocery store, trying to find something to eat, I noticed a few things. One, that I had no idea what I wanted. Two, that jumbo globe artichokes were on sale. Problem solved. The only other question, what should I sauce my nice, heavy, purple tinted thistle with? Usually, a glob of mayonnaise or some melted butter work just fine, as these spring treats do not need much help....but not today. I needed to go the extra mile, mostly because I was kind of bored and needed something to do. Taking a cue from a recent film that I saw that shall remain nameless (about food blogging, of all things), I knew that I needed to attempt a hollandaise to drown my chokes in. I will demonstrate a fail-safe and easy way to make a really nice sauce using a stick blender. It works like a charm, and the best part was that I could make half the normal amount so there was no waste!

First, prepare the artichoke. Cut off the stem, and cut the artichoke in half. This will allow it to cook faster. Place both halves, stem side down, into a small pot with about 2 inches of water. Cover, and cook for about 25-30 minutes, or until the leaves pull off easily. Prepare the hollandaise sauce about 5 minutes before the artichoke is done. Once cooked, using a spoon, scoop out the fuzzy part (the choke). Pour the hollandaise into the cavity that was vacated by the choke, and go to work!

Hollandaise Sauce (stick blender method)

2 egg yolks
1 tbsp lemon juice
4 tbsp melted butter (1/2 a stick)
1 pinch cayenne pepper
1 pinch salt

Take a bowl, half full of water and throw it in the microwave for a minute to heat up the water. Meanwhile, use the stick blender to whip the egg yolks and lemon juice up in a glass jar or some other sturdy glass container, until it almost doubles in volume. Begin to drizzle in the melted butter, one spoonful at a time while blending. Once all the butter has been whipped in, place the glass jar into the bowl of hot water, whip for about 30 seconds, and let it rest until you have the artichoke prepared. Drown the artichoke and eat!

Now, just in case you have never seen an artichoke bloom, well, here is a picture of one that I took while strolling around in the Pacific Beach community garden. The flower is an awesome, bright blue color, and with it's great big fuzzy crown it really is an amazing blossom. Almost a shame that most of these end up on a dinner plate.....almost.

Food Economics:

Artichoke - $1.50
Eggs - $1.99 dz = ($0.332 for 2)
Fresh lemon = $.89 ($0.445 tbsp of juice, or about half a lemon)
Butter - $2.99 16oz = ($0.374 for 4tbsp)
Pinch of Salt & Cayenne = ($0.050)

Grand Total = $2.70

1 comment:

  1. Mmmm....I love artichokes! Nice work JB! I am impressed by your foodiness and writing :)