Native to the Mediterranean, artichokes are technically plants even though we consider them vegetables. The edible part of the plant is the flower bud and stem which is harvested prior to blooming.
The largest global producer of artichokes is Italy, while in the United States, California produces 100% of artichoke crop. One plant can produce more than 20 artichokes a year, harvesting in Spring and again in the Fall.
To pick the freshest artichokes, look for the ones with leaves that are tightly closed. They can be stored in the refrigerator for up to a week but they’re the most delicious when they’re fresh. For tips on how to cook and enjoy artichokes, visit Simply Recipes.
Artichokes are a very good source of dietary fiber, vitamins C and K, folate and manganese. They also contain niacin, magnesium, phosphorus, potassium and copper.