Friday, May 8, 2009

Roasted Sunchokes

Longmont Farmer's Market: May 9, 2009  
Time: very early- 2:00p rain or shine!

Sunchokes (a.k.a. Jerusalem artichokes)  These are odd little guys...They are North Americas oldest tuber. They look like a cross between ginger and a potato, but they have a sweet, nutty flavor.

As defined by, The Food Lover's Companion:  "This vegetable is not truly an artichoke but a variety of sunflower with a lumpy, brown-skinned tuber that often resembles a gingerroot. Contrary to what the name implies, this vegetable has nothing to do with Jerusalem but is derived instead from the Italian word for sunflower, girasole. Because of its confusing moniker, modern-day growers have begun to call Jerusalem artichokes sunchokes, which is how they're often labeled in the produce section of many markets. The white flesh of this vegetable is nutty, sweet and crunchy. Store in a plastic bag in the refrigerator for up to a week. After that, they will begin to wither because of moisture loss. They may be peeled or, because the skin is very thin and quite nutritious, simply washed well before being used. Jerusalem artichokes can be eaten raw in salads or cooked by boiling or steaming and served as a side dish. They also make a delicious soup. Jerusalem artichokes are a good source of iron."

More useful facts: The plant stores inulin (not insulin) as starch for extra energy during winter months in its tubers. What makes the sunchoke useful, for diabetics in particular, is that the inulin it contains breaks down into fructose instead of glucose during digestion. For diabetics, this makes the sunchoke a good substitute for other starchy foods such as potatoes.


Here is a quick recipe:

Roasted Sunchokes

1-2 lbs sunchokes, scrubbed, cut into uniform chunks
2 Tbl olive oil
Fresh herbs ( Thyme, Rosemary. Sage, etc.)
Green garlic, Chopped
Sea Salt
Fresh ground pepper

Oven: 375 Degree F.

Toss Sunchoke w/ olive oil, salt and pepper and place on a parchment lined sheet pan in the middle of the oven. Roast for 20 minutes. Add Fresh herbs and green garlic to sunchokes and stir, return pan to oven, and continue to roast until chokes are golden and the green garlic is tender. Season with additional salt and pepper.

See you at the Market.

Chef Deb 

**P.S. Meet us in Longmont for our first, Farmer's Market Tour & Dinner!! 

May 30, 2009 @ 1:30-5:00 ish  
Fee: $45 per guest
Register at LFM this weekend!

 Chef Guided market tour, food, cooking class, dinner, recipes and a whole lot of fun!


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