Steamed artichokes (or any artichoke dish for that matter) look so fancy to me. They seem like what you eat when you're feeling decadent. Well I say they should be something we eat whenever! Heck, this is what I ate after being outside in the cold for a welding lesson. Posh food? Nope, just good food! It's actually one of the most easy and fun vegetable appetizers out there because everyone just digs in together and it ends in people fighting to get a bite of the prized artichoke heart! No get together is complete without a fight, am I right?! (Oh you don't have that sort of family? Well just wait until your beloved eats the whole thing without you!!)
In my pre-veg days I was given two choices for dips with an artichoke - melted butter and mayonnaise. Just the idea makes my stomach turn these days! Instead, I went with a really yummy creamy (oil free!) roasted red pepper mayonnaise. It's punched up with some garlic and guess what! It makes a fabulous sandwich spread as well.
OH AND CHECK IT OUT! I made a video for this. Can you believe that?! It's been so long. I didn't even get dressed up or anything. I had so much fun that I think I'm going to have to do it again!!! (BTW it's not my kitchen! I got to borrow my mother-in-law's (isn't that nice?!) Mine isn't that clean right now. Also, I don't buy or use any oils that you may see in the background in the video!)
Get a steamer (I LOVE mine!) ready in a large pot with water filled up to just under the bottom of the steamer. Wash your artichokes and cut the stems off. Save those stems though, they are just as delicious as the artichoke heart! You want to cut the fibrous outside off of the stem and set it aside.
Now some people cut the pointy ends off every outer leaf of the artichoke and then cut the top off by about 1/4 -1/2". You can do that. You don't have to. If I don't have to do something, chances are I won't. So yeah I don't bother.
Now place your artichokes in the steamer basket and set your timer for 15 minutes. After 15 minutes add in the artichoke stems. Cook for another 15 minutes. Take out, let them cool, and serve with some dip!
When you get to the end of the leaves you will be left with a lovely little fuzzy piece. Remove the fuzzy part (the choke) with a spoon. Now you can eat that entire bottom - that's the heart and it's the best! Though the stems are really really good too. (I save those for myself because that's what the cook does. Ha!)
Roasted Red Pepper Vegan Mayo
- 12oz (about 1 cup) silken tofu (such as Mori-nu Soft Silken Tofu - it doesn't need to be soft, just silken)
- juice 1/2 lemon
- 1/4 teaspoon prepared yellow or dijon mustard
- 1 teaspoon apple cider vinegar
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 2 drops of liquid stevia (or 1/4 teaspoon sugar)
- 1 cup roasted red peppers
- 2 cloves garlic
Blend everything together until very smooth. (I just put it all in a large wide mouth jar and blend with my immersion blender. Then put on the lid and store it! Easy and less mess!) Eat on everything! Okay, at least on artichokes, sandwiches, raw veggies, etc.