Saturday, April 18, 2009


Artichokes are one of my very favorite things. Not only do they taste great but they come out at the first of spring and one can look forward to warmer weather and growth in the garden. I recently bought some jumbo artichokes at Stanleys. If you live on the north side of Chicago, you should definitely check this place out. It is a fruit and vegetable place on North Avenue that has amazing prices. I can walk out of there with 7 or 8 bags full of wonderful fruit and veggies for less than $20. They had the jumbo chokes for 49 cents each. I usually like to have them with melted butter but I recently saw a recipe for a Yogurt Mayonnaise Vinaigrette in the New York Times that I tried last night. It was so delicious, a touch healthier that the melted butter and much more interesting. I've copied it here for your convenience.

Yogurt-Mayonnaise Vinaigrette

Traditionally steamed artichokes are served with drawn butter or with a mayonnaise. I use a vinaigrette-based sauce thickened with just a bit of mayonnaise and yogurt.

2 tablespoons white wine vinegar or sherry vinegar

Sea salt or kosher salt to taste

1 teaspoon Dijon mustard

1 small garlic clove, minced or pureed

2 tablespoon mayonnaise

2 tablespoons plain low-fat yogurt

1/3 cup extra virgin olive oil

Freshly ground pepper to taste

1. Whisk together the vinegar, salt, Dijon mustard and garlic. Whisk in the mayonnaise, yogurt and olive oil, and blend well. Taste, adjust salt, and add pepper. Use as a dip for artichokes or other vegetables.

Yield: 3/4 cup

Variation: Substitute 1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice for 1 tablespoon of the vinegar

Martha Rose Shulman can be reached at

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