Choke Up The Sun: Recipes With The Jerusalem Artichoke

– by Jakob Anderson, Food Writer –

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Please note: images are for illustrative purposes only.

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Jerusalem artichokes, also known as sun chokes, are one of my favourite vegetables to use on a week to week basis. Sun chokes offer a perfect balance between sweet and savoury, and are also extremely versatile. These nutty tasting tubers can be roasted, boiled, panfried, grilled, pickled, dehydrated or deep fried (and I’m sure I’ve missed a few).The Germans even use them to make brandy! You might have heard that sun chokes can cause severe gas and diarrhea because of their high inulin content, but this is only prevalent if you’re eating them raw. My personal favourite way to cook jerusalem artichokes is to roast them whole at a high temperature. The skin becomes crispy while the flesh breaks down into a gooey and flavour intense substance. I always make sure to pick up a pound or two while at the farmers market, but most grocery stores carry them too. Here are some great ways to use them in recipes.

Jerusalem Artichoke Soup with Fried Mushroom, Sage and Walnut

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Jerusalem artichoke soup.

1lb jerusalem artichokes, skin on, small diced

1 onion, small diced

4 garlic cloves, small diced

1/2 cup white wine

1 litre chicken stock

2 sprigs fresh thyme

2 cup assorted mushrooms (whichever you please)

5 sage leaves

1/2 cup walnuts

1/2 cup vegetable oil

In large pot, sweat onions, garlic and artichokes with oil until they are soft and begin to stick to the pan. Season with salt and pepper. Add white wine to deglaze the pan and reduce by half. Add chicken stock and thyme, bring to boil and then simmer until artichokes are soft, approximately 30 minutes. Once cooked, remove thyme sprigs and blend soup in blender (or with an immersion hand blender). For mushrooms, fry on high heat in oil until cooked through. Add sage and walnuts, frying until fragrant. Top each soup bowl with mushroom mixture.

Roasted Jerusalem Artichokes with Rosemary and Garlic

Jerusalem artichokes that have been roasted and sliced.

Jerusalem artichokes that have been roasted and sliced.

Sometimes less is more. This is my go to at least twice a week. They are simple, satisfying and an outstanding replacement for plain old roasted white potatoes!

1lb jerusalem artichokes, halved or cut into thirds depending on size

salt and pepper

2 sprigs fresh rosemary, finely chopped

4 cloves garlic

olive oil

Heat oven to 450ºf. Toss artichokes in olive oil, salt, pepper, rosemary.  Place on roast pan and cook for 30 minutes until they are very sticky (quickly eat that syrup in the roast pan before it crystallizes, trust me). About 10 minutes prior to them being done, add the garlic.

Seared Pork Rib Chop with Jerusalem Artichoke Chips and Mustard Jus 

1 bone in rib chop

Jerusalem artichoke chips.

Jerusalem artichoke chips.

salt and pepper

2 jerusalem artichokes, sliced 1/8inch thin

1 cup vegetable oil, plus 1 tbsp for pork

1tbsp grainy mustard

1 shallot, finely diced

1/2 cup chicken stock

1 tbsp apple cider vinegar

In medium frying pan (preferably cast iron), heat vegetable oil on high heat. Season pork chop with salt and pepper, then add it to hot pan. Cook 30 seconds per side on high heat, then reduce to medium heat. Continue cooking 30 seconds per side. Cook until internal temperature reaches 145ºf (medium). Remove from pan and allow meat to rest for 5-10 minutes. For artichokes, heat oil in small pot until it reaches 300ºf. Add artichokes and fry until they are golden brown. Transfer to plate lined with paper towel. For jus, use the same pan as the pork chop. Add shallots, mustard, chicken stock and vinegar, scraping the scum off the bottom of the pan. Stir continuously until you have a thick jus. Slice pork chop and pour jus around it, topping with the chips.

Mashed Jerusalem Artichokes with Garlic and Chive

Mashed jerusalem artichokes.

Mashed jerusalem artichokes.

My brother is the worlds most cautious eater. He enjoys pizza, hotdogs, cereal, pasta and potatoes. He enjoys this recipe, describing it as “pretty good” (which translates to BLOODY AMAZING for everybody else). Cooking the garlic whole in the stock with the artichokes allows their flavour to remain pure; you’re not looking for caramelized or roasted flavours here.

1lb jerusalem artichokes, large diced

1 head of garlic (not clove, head), peeled, cloves left whole

2 tbsp olive oil

salt and pepper

2 tbsp chives, finely chopped (optional)

1 litre chicken stock

In large pot, bring chicken stock to boil and then add artichokes, garlic, salt and pepper. Cook for 30 minutes until artichokes are soft. Remove artichokes and garlic, placing them in a bowl with olive oil. Reduce chicken stock by half then pour over artichoke mixture and mash. Serve with chives (the most classic mashed potatoes garnish I could think of, does literally nothing for the dish except add some greenery).

Seared Salmon With Jerusalem Artichoke and Hazelnut Puree

1 small filet of salmon (300g), skin on

Salmon and artichokes go together beautifully.

Salmon and artichokes go together beautifully.

1 tbsp vegetable oil

salt and pepper

2 sprigs fresh dill

3 jerusalem artichokes, small diced

1 clove garlic, small dice

1/2 onion, small dice

1 cup heavy cream

1 cup chicken stock

1/4 cup hazelnuts, toasted

salt and pepper

olive oil

In medium frying pan, heat oil on high heat. Add salmon, skin side down and cook for 1 minute on high. Reduce to medium heat and continue cooking on skin side for another 3 minutes or until the skin is crisp as glass (AS GLASS). Flip onto flesh side and cook for an additional 1-2 minutes until your fish reaches 125ºf. Remove from pan and allow to rest for 2-3 minutes. For puree, in a small pot sweat artichokes, onions and garlic in oil. Season with salt and pepper.  Add cream, chicken stock and hazelnuts. Cook until artichokes are soft. Transfer mixture to blender, blending until your puree is silky smooth. Pass through a fine mesh strainer if you want it baby bottom smooth. Pour puree on bottom of plate, top with salmon and dill.

Jakob Anderson is a trained cook and food enthusiast who approaches cooking as something that connects people in ways they don’t realize. “I love talking about food, eating food, thinking food, discussing food, debating food, think about debating food, fooding food? I love food.”

You can follow Jakob on Twitter @jakobanderson and Q-Avenue @QuincyAvenue