Starting with the freshest artichokes will lengthen its shelf life and help maintain good flavor. Select ones that are heavy and firm with a compact center, and sporting a healthy green color.
Store fresh unwashed artichokes in a plastic bag in the crisper section of the refrigerator for 1 week.
Cooked artichokes can be refrigerated in a sealed container for up to 4 days.
To freeze whole cooked artichokes: Blanch artichokes in a mixture of 1/2 cup lemon juice or 1 tablespoon ascorbic acid (Vitamin C) to 2 quarts of water to keep the globes from darkening. Blanch small artichokes for 3 to 5 minutes and medium for 7 minutes. Drain completely, wrap tightly in foil and pack in plastic freezer bags or other airtight containers for 6 to 8 months.
Do not freeze or can raw artichokes: freezing turns the flesh black and destroys texture and flavor; canning turns artichokes mushy.
Artichokes can be pickled.
The artichoke is a member of the thistle group of the sunflower family.
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