Knobbly Jerusalem artichokes were on my menu this week. Until recently they’d always held a certain sense of mystery for me, they’re absolutely delicious and a must-try for any budding foodie out there. Now is the time to do it too, they are smack bang in season, and in these cold, dark winter months with very little interesting fresh produce on offer, they should definitely be something to celebrate! At this time of year, for me it’s always a balance between kick starting a healthy eating pattern and still craving delicious winter warming foods, but until spring has completely sprung I don’t have a problem tucking in to the latter! I haven’t seen Jerusalem Artichokes in any of the supermarkets so your best bet is at a good farmers market. That’s where I found mine, even though I had planted some in my garden early last year, unfortunately the growing didn’t exactly go to plan.
Jerusalem Artichokes are root veggies, they’re not actually not part of the artichoke family! They have a surprising earthy, smoky taste, which is really interesting for a rather pale piece of veg which looks almost vaguely similar to ginger. Now I do have address the issue of something slightly untoward; flatulence is a common complaint from some of those who eat the Jerusalem Artichoke, so it may not be the vegetable to serve on a romantic Valentine’s date… you have been warned! There are lots of recipes that suggest peeling the skin, which can be done rather painstakingly using a teaspoon, but in my opinion a good scrub will clean them up for eating and you get left with gleaming little nuggets which beg to eaten! There are plenty of options if the recipe here doesn’t float your boat, they can be thinly shaved into salads or made into a creamy soup.