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December 3, 2020

Artichokes – the aristocracy in my vegetable basket!

Posted on September 25, 2013 by in rsg, vegetarian

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Artichokes have been the illusive vegetable for me to prepare! I am not sure why I avoided making them for so many years! Had I known it was so easy, I would have tried preparing them ages ago! Which proves one thing, we are never to old to learn!

Artichokes are just too delicious, I love them as anti-pasta, in salads, on pizzas or straight from the jar, but sadly I have always been forced to buy them in a jar with a vinaigrette or olive oil! I have just always been hesitant to buy them fresh!


Yet, artichokes are just so beautiful, I love the shape and the thought of taking away all the outer leaves only to find the “heart” appeals to me big time! I think there is a lesson to learn in there somewhere! Sometimes we have to peel away all the nonsense in our lives and relationships, in search for the heart. When you find it, it was worth the struggle to get there!

Artichokes are a variety of the thistle family that was just cultivated as food and it is recorded that it was the ancient Greeks and Romans who first discovered the culinary value of artichokes! God bless them! Even today the biggest bulk of artichoke production is still in the Mediterranean regions!Artochokes

How apt it was then to receive a HUGE box of fresh artichokes on the eve of my birthday! Remember what I said earlier  and never being to old to learn! Certainly at half a century old, I was eager to master the art of preparing artichokes!

I have seen so many delicious ways of preparing artichokes on the web. When I need inspiration I just have find my local foodie heroes and get exactly what I need! Our own beloved Sam from Drizzle and Dip stuffed her artichokes with a parsley and pesto crumb and while my foodie hero Abigail Donnelly made pickled artichokes and enjoyed it with melted gruyere on rye! Babara Joubert, made a lovely quiche, using artichokes!

So the generous Justin who surprised me with, most probably, my best foodie gift ever, also supplied instructions on how to cook them!


Artichokes with truffle Mayonnaise

Serves – as many as you have artichokes



olive oil


lemon juice

For the truffle Mayonnaise

2 egg yolks

15 ml lemon juice

5 ml white vinegar

5 ml Dijon mustard

350 ml olive oil

25 ml Truffle oil

salt and pepper

Truffle Oil


To prepare the artichokes

Place 5 – 6 artichokes in a pot ( depending how big or small your pot is) and add water and olive oil. The water/oil ratio must be 2/3 water and 1/3 oil. So if you are using 3 cups liquid, it should be 2 cups water and 1 cup oil. The artichokes must be about a quarter deep in the water/oil. Add the lemon juice and bring to the boil. Once the artichokes are boiling, reduce the heat and simmer for about 15 minutes or until you can pull out the outer leaves with ease!

To prepare the truffle mayonnaise

In the tall glass of the stick blender, place the egg yolks, the lemon juice, vinegar and the mustard. Lastly add the olive oil. Place the blender right to the bottom of the glass, over the egg yolks. Start the machine and as the mixture starts the emulsify, slowly pull pull up the blender to see the magic happen right in front of your eyes. Add the salt, pepper and truffle  olive oil and enjoy with the artichokes.

To enjoy the artichokes

Place a big platter of the cooked artichokes in the middle of the table and individual bowls of mayonnaise. Let everybody tuck in, pulling the leaves off, eating the little bottom ends of them, only to get the the heart of the artichoke!

If you want to preserve the artichoke hearts, simply remove the hairy outside and place the hearts in a glass jar and top with olive oil and a clove of garlic or two. Delicious on pizza, anti-pasto sandwiches or with cold meats.


The best wine in the Leopards Leap Culinaria Collection to have with these delicious artichokes , is the Culinaria Chenin Blanc Grenache Blanc.


Don’t forget about the competition where stand a chance to win a full collection of Culinaria Wines or a tasting menu for 4.

Enter NOW!

A wonderful meal consisting  of edible gifts I received from special people! The artichokes from my friend Justin and the truffle oil, all the way from Belgium from my friend Catherine Hermans! I am truly grateful for all the gifts I receive every day, tangible and non-tangible! More importantly I am grateful for the gift of life!

Life is a gift

and it offers privilege

and responsibility to give

something back

by becoming more!

Tony Robbins



Photo of Nina Timm taken at RSG outside broadcast-Des Timm

As many of you know I forgot Nina’s Birthday in 2007, she (eventually) fell in love with the internet and blogging and here we are some 6 years later with 100’s of post’s, Millions of pages views, a fantastic opportunity (via Martelize Brink and Johan Raddeman (& RSG)) to talk to the nation every Thursday. There are 1000’s of you who make our lives so special and it is a treat to hear the beautiful stories you relay to Nina. HONESTLY…there are days I wish I had remembered her birthday in 2007 and bought perfume 🙂 but like taking you on the kayaking trip on our honeymoon Nin…no one would have as many stories as we do…all because of your career. All the best in the years ahead…….you are a classic piece of Afrikana. If I outlive you…..which I doubt……I will have you stuffed and placed at the the Taal Paal or the Voortrekker Monument because every tourist to our country should see what a true Mom, friend, sister, daughter and wife looks like. I will try make life more bearable for the next 50!! Your laugh is infectious enough to want to catch……I hope it never end ceases- I LOVE YOU!! -des Ps. I bought you perfume this year !! 🙂

Tomorrow morning just after the 9 o’clock news, I will be  back in my seat at RSG studios, sharing this easy recipe with you! Get ready to be amazed! I will also in weeks to come take you into the kitchens of other bloggers, chefs and interesting South Africans this year. So buckle up, it is going to be an awesome ride. Tune in 100-104FM or listen online here!

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3 Responses to “Artichokes – the aristocracy in my vegetable basket!”

  1. Elizabeth dockel 26 September 2013 at 12:25 pm #

    What a lovely birthday tribute from hubby, he must be very special

  2. Martie Jacobs 27 September 2013 at 3:10 pm #

    Nee, ek is seker dat dit ‘n fout is! Kan dit so maklik wees om die goed gaar te maak? Die uitdaging is nou aan my om definitief die resep te prober.
    Geluk met jou mooi familie wat so mooi gesing het! Die manne kan maar leer hoe om ‘n vrou so mooi geluk te wens.

  3. Sheena Mathew 3 October 2013 at 12:17 pm #

    Ah Nina you are very loved! Your husband carries a heart overloaded with love for you. Enjoy this very special man you share your life with, he is one in ten thousand!!!

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