THE SEASON TO ENJOY ARTICHOKES
The artichoke is a spring vegetable that can be used in a multitude of dishes or eaten alone, grilled or boiler, for example.
A vegetable as tasty as polyvalent, it is already known by most that the artichoke has a more significant proportion of proteins and carbohydrates than other plants.
Between its leaves hides a treasure of vitamins: A, C and B, minerals such as calcium, phosphorus and iron and antioxidants.
A gift for our health, always considered as an ally for our body, is for example perfect to alleviate liver problems since it is an excellent detoxifier of the liver.
The artichoke is the fruit of the artichoke (Cynara tacrolimus), perennial plant up to 2 meters high, with very lobed leaves, without thorns (unlike the thistles, of the same family), pale green with whitish threads for its lower part.
The artichoke could be native to Egypt or North Africa. The plant called Cynara was already known by Greeks and Romans. Apparently, they were granted aphrodisiac powers.
It has always been a trendy food, and during the Middle Ages it was one of the most expensive and tastiest foods that existed: Catalina de Médecis and Luis XIV, king of France, were big consumers of artichoke.
In the Iberian Peninsula, it was introduced by the Arabs, and there is a doubt between the possibility of teaching their cultivation or applying the techniques learned at the origin to transform the thistles that always populated our geography.
Spanish and French navigators introduced the artichoke in America, where it is grown in California and other areas of temperate climate.
The artichoke is also part of popular culture in many parts of the world. It is present in proverbs, riddles, games and children's stories and even in poetry and literature, have written about it: Juan Cervera Sanchís, Julio Cortázar and Pablo Neruda, the latter in his "Odas elementales" (1945), wrote "Oda an Artichoke".
As soon as we think of artichokes, the artichoke of Prat de Llobregat inevitably comes to mind.
And we are lucky to enjoy, very close to L'Óstia Barceloneta, one of the highest quality artichokes and preferred by the Barcelona market thanks to its taste and quality palate.
And producers are working to obtain the European denomination of quality of Protected Geographical Indication (PGI).
Deep and fertile, the Delta del Llobregat, has a temperate climate in winter, thanks to the protection of the mountains and the marine action of the Mediterranean, favouring a sweeter and tender artichoke.
The tasting note of the School of Hospitality of Castelldefels, defines the artichoke of the Prat as "slightly acidic, fresh, intense and sweet and velvety. Tasteful and smooth. "
It contrasts with artichokes from other origins, especially for the softness of its flavour, and for being less oxidative, as well as for its subtle texture and the mild astringency produced by the tenacity of the plant.
The highest quality artichoke Prat, is obtained within a few hours of being harvested.
It is marketed following the determinations of the FRESC product label of the Agrarian Park, which establishes and guarantees the minimum time and distance between harvest and distribution to the consumer, maintaining all its organoleptic and nutritional properties.
In addition to the almost usual artichoke chips that you will find here, in the l'Òstia Barceloneta restaurant, from this weekend, among our suggestions, you can taste Artichokes del Prat candied with clams in Jerez licour, do not miss it, a healthy, simple, complete and entirely Mediterranean dish.
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