Artichokes with Garlic and Olive Oil
4 artichokes (pick tightly furled ones that "squeak" slightly when you squeeze them)
4-8 garlic cloves, peeled (depending on their size and your love of garlic)
1 Tbsp. olive oil
In a saucepan just large enough to hold all the artichokes upright (but not so large that they flop over), add an inch of water, the olive oil, and a generous sprinkling of salt (like the amount you'd add if you were cooking pasta in the water). Turn on the heat under the pan while you prepare the artichokes.
To prep the artichokes, cut a small slice off the bottom of each artichoke stem, making sure the cut will allow the artichoke to stand up straight. Like this:
Place the artichokes upright in the pan of water, bring water to a simmer, and cover with lid:
(I was only cooking two, so I downsized the pot accordingly.)
Remove artichokes from the hot water with a pair of tongs and turn them upside down for a moment to drain out any water caught in the leaves.
Artichokes cooked this way are equally delicious when served hot, room temperature, or chilled. Serve with a side dish of hot melted butter (for hot artichokes) or aioli or mayonnaise mixed with something yummy (lemon juice, Sriracha sauce, etc.). Or just enjoy them "naked"--my favorite way.
P.S. If the artichokes in the store look a bit "scorched," they might have been touched by frost. The discoloration doesn't affect their taste. Some growers put a tag like this on their product, just in case. So don't let the homely looks throw you off!: