What is a Jerusalem Artichoke?
Jerusalem artichokes – sometimes called sunchokes, sunroots, or earth apples.
They’re the reason I look forward to winter. The Jerusalem Artichoke is a tuber taken from a species of sunflower, native to North America. It has a sweet, nutty taste and can be prepared in a variety of different ways. Jerusalem artichokes are in season from October to April – coincidentally the time you’re most likely to want food you can eat from the comfort of your couch.
How do I use a Jerusalem Artichoke?
There are many ways to prepare a Jerusalem artichoke. You can boil it, slice and pan fry it, or roast it to bring out more of its nutty flavour. Seeing as I often have guests over, I prefer to turn the sunchoke into a dish which is easy to share with a crowd – a dip. The dip brings out the Sunchoke’s sweet taste, and uses its synergy with cream, butter, and lemon to maximize the artichoke’s flavour. If you feel like putting in some extra effort, pair it up with some delicious focaccia.
Despite the fact they look a lot like ginger, the flavor cannot be compared. It’s very savoury and lacks ginger’s sweetness. It’s very nutty and in a way it reminds you of a well seasoned fried potato. I realize that doesn’t say much, but it’s simply well worth trying.
- 500gr / 1.1lb Jerusalem Artichokes, sliced thinly
- 2 crushed cloves of garlic
- 1 small chilli, deseeded and finely diced
- 1 1/2tbsp lemon juice
- 50gr / 1.75oz Manouri cheese (substitute with Feta if needed)
- 30gr / 1oz butter cut into 1cm cubes
- 60ml / 2oz olive oil
- Salt, to flavor
- Baguette, Focaccia, or crackers to serve
- Preheat the oven to 180°C/320°F.
- In a large bowl, toss the artichokes with half of the olive oil and a pinch of salt.
- Spread the artichokes, butter, and garlic onto a low baking dish, then place in the oven to roast until golden, 25 to 30 minutes.
- Allow the dish and its contents to cool for a couple of minutes before pouring into a food processor along with the cheese, chilli, and lemon juice. Process on low, adding the olive oil in a thin, steady stream.
- Taste and season as needed. Mix briefly.
- Serve with toasted baguette, focaccia, water crackers, or all three