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Here are the cardoons growing in my garden. They are generally taller than artichoke plants.
Earwigs and their eggs seem to like living among the stalks.
A smaller, new shoot will have stalks that are more tender.
Trim the leaves from each stalk.
Here are a bunch of cardoons ready for peeling.
Use a potato peeler or knife to remove the stringy exterior ribs.
Then cut each stalk into pieces. Try tasting them uncooked.
Add juice of half lemon and the lemon itself to a quart of water. The acidified bath helps prevent discoloration.
I had some green garlic and spring onions that I added to some olive oil and sautéed.
Then I added the cardoons, which were drained. I cooked them for less than ten minutes. I wanted them to keep their crunch.
I tossed bread crumbs with the cardoons in a bowl and topped with grated Parmesan cheese.
I served the cooked cardoons with a nearby vase of cardoon stalks. They were a distinctively earthy side dish.