No prizes for guessing what we are having in this week’s box – Jerusalem artichokes! Make the most of these little gems whilst they are in season. Here are some fun facts about them:
- It is a very misnamed vegetable – there are no real links with Jerusalem
- It isn’t related to other artichokes The French explorer Samuel de Champlain who brought them to Europe described them as tasting like artichokes which may explain part of their name
- But they are related to the sunflower and the Jerusalem part of the name is thought to be derived from girasole, Italian for sunflower
- They are native to North America and were first discovered at Cape Cod in 1605
- They are used in the industrial production of fructose, which is derived from the insulin content of the vegetable which explains the sweet flavour
Like apples, Jerusalem artichokes do discolour when exposed to air, so drop pieces into water with a squeeze of lemon juice if peeling or cutting. It is also easier to peel these knobbly little creatures after boiling.
Jerusalem artichoke can be cooked like potatoes (they are tubers after all) and served with or without the skin – scrub clean and leave it on for maximum nutritional benefit (and arguably taste). You can even just scrub and roast them whole like mini jacket potatoes and then split them open. There is the additional benefit that they can also be eaten raw (e.g. in salads) or lightly stir-fried, unlike potatoes.
Now, on what to do with the vegetables in your box here are a few ideas from our past newsletters/ blog posts:
- Jamie Oliver’s sautéed Jerusalem artichoke with garlic and bay leaves as a fab alternative to spuds
- Ottolenghi’s roast chicken and Jerusalem artichoke and lemon
- Carrot and Jerusalem artichoke soup by Delia Smith – great way to use up your carrots also and dead easy peasy
- Cream of Jerusalem artichoke soup with white wine and double cream, yum!
For the rest of the vegetables in this week’s box, try searching on our webpage for past blogs!
This Week’s Bounty
* Valour Potatoes, Perry Court
* Carrots, Lincs
* Onions, Norfolk
* Jerusalem Artichokes, Lincs
* Jan King Cabbage, Kent
Items starred (*) above
Apples – Gala, Kent (standard only)