The King of the Winter
The artichoke harvesting has started and I think, can be helpful, give to you all some news and an “American” curiosity. It is no exaggeration to call the artichoke the “King of the winter.” The artichoke is a beloved vegetable for its great virtues: culinary personality, extraordinary versatility and nutritional qualities. It is available for more than eight months, from October to June and many varieties it blooming several times during the year. It is a vegetable very common, especially in the Mediterranean erea and Italy, holds the world record of its production. Themost extensive crops are in Liguria, Tuscany, Lazio, Puglia, Sardinia and Sicily. The artichoke is cultivated for its inflorescences, which are formed at the ends of sturdy stems up to 5ft. The artichoke hearts that is commonly found on the fresh market, are the immature inflorescence, of the artichoke plant, collected before the flowers can blooming! What normally are called leaves, are more precisely “bracts,” overlay each other to protect the flower that arise inside. These, together with the fluff of white bristles called “pappus” and the inner tender bracts, are the edible part of the artichoke. Finally the “American” curiosity:
Marilyn Monroe, was elected “Queen of the artichoke,” in 1949 in Castroville, California. It was the first edition of the Artichoke Festival, which, since then, is held every year.