How to Eat an Artichoke

September 1, 2013
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The process of eating an artichoke can be both efficient and satisfying if you utilize the correct tools as well as follow proper artichoke-eating methodology.

A helpful hint in the art of artichoke eating is to utilize the correct utensils. In this particular case the only things necessary are a pair of hands, some teeth, and a fork. If you do not have a pair of hands it may be beneficial to enlist the help of a friend or family member. If you do not have teeth it would be extremely advantageous to invest in a set of dentures. If you do not have a fork a serrated kitchen knife will work just as well, though these are found to be considerably more dangerous. A napkin and plate are also highly recommended though not strictly necessary. Now that you have gathered the required apparatus you are ready to begin the process.

First, gently pull on the outer leaves of the artichoke using slightly clenched teeth. When improper to pull the leaves off with your mouth, if you are in public, for example, your fingers will also get the job done. Grasp the edge of the spiny leaf between the thumb and index finger and pull until it is removed from the body of the artichoke. You will be left with a leaf in two fingers, or teeth, depending on venue and preference, and an artichoke on your plate. Take the aforementioned leaf in a manner similar to holding a chip and dip it into whichever sauces are offered. The most commonly preferred dips include mayonnaise, vinaigrette, and melted butter. If there are such no dips offered then you will just have to enjoy the pure, wholesome taste of unadulterated artichoke. Next, gently scrape off the fleshy bits at the bottom of the leaf by placing it between your front top and bottom teeth and pulling outward. Repeat this step until all outside leaves are nibbled on and discarded either on a napkin, plate, or trashcan which is proper artichoke-eating etiquette. Once all outer leaves are properly taken care of you will find yourself at the artichoke’s inner leaves. These do not have the spiny thorns or woody texturing but are a more translucent whitish, purplish color. Nevertheless, these leaves are inedible and must be disposed of in the same manner as previously mentioned. Peel these off as well; for this particular task fingers are more suited to the removal of the inner leaves than the teeth. You may think of these leaves as the inner guardians of the artichoke because after they are removed the heart is revealed. But the artichoke has one last defense before the consumption of its crown jewel. The choke. While not a technical term, you will choke if you do not remove the hirsute growth that covers the surface of the heart. Its rough hairiness would make for a most unpleasant demise. But alas, the horrid death by artichoke is easily avoidable. Using your fork or knife simply comb through the tangled choke in a gentle stroking motion. Make sure to stroke the choke until it is completely removed. Thus you have revealed the heart, which also happens to be the most coveted part. Using your fork again, be sure to remove all spiny bits, spear the heart of the artichoke through the middle, and eat it!

By following these simple steps you have now successfully eaten an artichoke and explored all the wonderful things it has to offer. You can now enjoy the spoils of your labor and rest assured knowing you have mastered the art of artichoke eating.

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