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sautéd jerusalem artichokes with garlic and bay leaves (Jamie Oliver)


Jerusalem artichokes are sweet and almost garlicky and mushroomy and gorgeous. Although called artichokes they’re actually tubers – like rough and ready potatoes. You can scrub and roast them whole like mini jacket potatoes and split them open, drizzled with a little chilli oil. You can even use them in a salad with smoky bacon. A Jerusalem artichoke’s best friends are sage, thyme, butter, bacon, bay, cream, breadcrumbs, cheese and anything smoked.


sautéd jerusalem artichokes with garlic and bay leaves

To serve 4, you will need 600g/1lb 6oz of Jerusalem artichokes. Peel them, then cut them into chunks. Place them in an oiled frying pan and fry on a medium heat until golden on both sides, then add a few bay leaves, 2 cloves of garlic, finely sliced, a splash of white wine vinegar, some salt and pepper, and place a lid on top. After about 20 to 25 minutes they will have softened up nicely and you can remove the lid and the bay leaves. Continue cooking for a couple of minutes to crisp the artichoke slices up one last time, then serve straight away. Personally, I think they go well with both meat and fish and are particularly good in a plate of antipasti, or in soups or warm salads.

• from Jamie's Dinners

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Plus some good info from "The Cook and the Chef" at

What’s in a name? In the case of Jerusalem artichokes, nothing but misleading information! Jerusalem artichokes are not from Jerusalem, and more surprisingly they’re not even part of the artichoke family; they’re actually related to the sunflower.
No-one is entirely sure where the misleading name originated, but one theory holds that the “Jerusalem” part of the name is a corruption of the Italian word for sunflower, “girasole,” which means “turning to the sun,” and the artichoke part arose when someone compared the delicious taste of the two vegetables.
However they got their name, we can be sure that Jerusalem artichokes originated in North America and the part we eat is an edible tuber. They can be eaten raw or cooked, and many people believe strongly in their health benefits. Vegetarians should note that Jerusalem artichokes contain large quantities of iron. Jerusalem artichokes are sometimes recommended for diabetics too, as they contain inulin, a starch that is not utilised by the body for energy, as opposed to sugar. The vegetable is therefore filling like a potato, but should not affect blood sugar levels. (Nb: Despite the similarity of its name to insulin, inulin has no connection with that hormone either chemically or through physiological activity)
Fresh vegetables appear plump and healthy. Avoid Jerusalem artichokes that have a greenish tinge, those that are sprouting, or ones that are shrivelled or mouldy. They're at their best from autumn through winter.
One final word on Jerusalem artichokes, a delicate matter regarding health which is perhaps best summed up by the 17th Century Botanist John Goodyer:
"But in my judgement, which way soever they be drest and eaten they stir up and cause a filthie loathesome stinking winde with the bodie, thereby causing the belly to bee much pained and tormented, and are a meat more fit for swine, than men."
Despite the slight possibility of “stinking winde” Maggie and Simon love the taste of Jerusalem artichokes and consider them a healthy addition to any winter meal, fit for both men and women!
another jamie oliver recipe here

although the text is a bit crazy - it's Baked Jerusalem Artichokes, Breadcrumbs, Thyme and Lemon

(with parmesan and creme fraiche)
am eating this now - it's totally delicious. we had artichokes, thyme and bay leaves in the garden, and food connect lemon (the ones on our tree aren't quite ripe), bread and yoghurt (which I used instead of the cream) so everything in the dish was local except the parmesan cheese

it's incredibly delicious too - light and subtle and fresh with lots of flavour depth but not too heavy - wild. it's the best sunchoke dish i've ever tasted, easily. took lots of peeling though! i was peeling sunchokes for about 30 minutes!
Mmm! Sounds fantastic. Sunchoke, though? Puzzled! My dad grew these hugely tall 'sunflowers' in Sydney and I've eaten tons of them smothered in white sauce. Don't remember them being peeled, though. My mum never peeled anything as a routine even in those far-off days when most people cooked veges to death. We even drank the vege water although mum used aluminium saucepans :-(
From whence can I get some planting material?
sunchoke is just another name for them
i've often eaten them without peeling but was following the recipe (for once) - was worth it too
anywhere that grows them - have you seen any nearby? maybe one of the community gardens?
i got mine from green harvest. i could wash some very well and send it to you in the post?
Storage of jerusalem artichokes:

How To Store Jerusalem Artichoke

Keep in a cool, dry place or in the fridge for up to 1 week.


Tubers of the Jerusalem artichoke do not store as well as potatoes. Where the ground does not freeze in winter, they are best left in the ground and harvested as needed. Place the ones you buy in a sealed plastic bag and store them in the refrigerator. Long term storage at temperatures near freezing will result in the conversion of starch to sugar which causes them to have an off flavor.


Should keep for up to 2 weeks in the salad compartment of the fridge.

Many people also successfully store them in a paper bag in a cool, dark cupboard or cellar.
I keep mine in a plastic basket in a dark cool cupboard in the kitchen - brushed but not washed - plus I also keep them in the ground, where they seem to do best (there's only so many you can eat in one week!)


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