When my mother comes to visit, she always comes with something yummy to cook up and oftentimes, she brings something new to try. So, what happens when she comes over after a trip to the health food store with an abundant amount of Jerusalem Artichokes? Well, we cooked some up, but since they are roots, I planted the rest in my garden. A few months later, I have a beautiful crop of small sunflowers. I will dig up the chokes as soon as they are ready, so right now I am enjoying these pretty little flowers.
Jerusalem artichokes (a.k.a. sunchokes) are so easy to grow! They have a delicate, artichokey flavor that is easily incorporated into recipes. They really don’t have anything to do with artichokes. The name came about from girasole, the Italian word for sunflowers, because the plants look like small sunflowers. The word “Girasole” somehow became “Jersualem” to English speaking people, and then “artichoke” was added to account for the similarity of flavor. Here’s one of our favorite recipes:
Roasted Jerusalem Artichokes
1 pound Jerusalem artichokes (sunchokes)
½ cup olive oil
1 tablespoons fresh thyme
2 cloves minced garlic
sea salt and pepper to taste
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C).
Scrub Jerusalem artichoke tubers and cut out eyes. Cut tubers into 1-inch pieces.
Mix olive oil, thyme, garlic, and sea salt together in a large bowl; add Jerusalem artichoke pieces and toss to coat. Arrange coated pieces in one evenly-spaced layer on a baking sheet.
Roast in the preheated oven until Jerusalem artichokes are tender, 35 to 45 minutes.