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Grilled Artichokes with Caper Mustard Aioli

This blog is written by celebrity chef and THOR Kitchen brand ambassador Derrick Fox. Each month, Chef Fox will be sharing his favorite recipes with step-by-step directions, pictures, and his signature style.

The Artichoke. You are obviously familiar with the artichoke hearts in the jar, in oil with some herbs. More recently you may have seen them popping up at your local grocery store, and thought, “wow, what do I even do with those?” Well, I’m here to help you conquer the daunting artichoke. The flavor of a fresh, grilled artichoke is delicious.

There are a few ways to tackle an artichoke. I’m going to share an easy way to clean, steam, and grill them, so you can eat the heart but also all that good meat on each leaf – #COOKLIKEAGOD!

Grilled Artichokes with Caper Mustard Aioli
Ingredients  Equipment
3 whole artichokes scissors
grapeseed oil spoon
rice wine vinegar 8qt pot with steam basket
salt grill/grill pan
pepper tongs
1 tbsp pickled mustard seeds (whole grain mustard)  whisk
2 tbsp capers   small mixing bowl
2 tbsp fresh chopped Parsley  
½ cup mayo  
½ fresh squeezed lemon

Quick tip, there are videos and techniques that use lemon to keep the artichoke from oxidizing and turning brown. Because we are grilling these, we can skip that step.

First, make your dipping sauce. Chop up capers and parsley. Mix mayo, chopped capers, parsley, pickled mustard seeds, lemon juice, and black pepper. If you like spicy, this is a good place to whisk into your aioli.

Artichoke time! Start with snipping the thorn off each leaf. Don’t worry about the leaves towards the top/middle that are tight together. These will be cut off with a knife once we open it up.

Now that all the thorns are snipped, use a vegetable peeler and peel the stalk. Take it down until you see the tender yellow stalk.

Now once they are all are nipped and peeled, cut the Artichoke in half from the stem to the top. With a spoon, scoop out the choke, the fibers in the middle, and any prickly leaves. Once the middle is cleaned, lay the artichoke on its back and slice the top off where the leaves are tight and still have thorns about ½ an inch.

       

Next place them in the large steam basket and place in the pot with a couple of inches of water, cover, and steam for 30-40 minutes. Definitely check the tenderness at 30 minutes. Do this by pulling one from the pot and poking the artichoke heart. It should be tender, but not too soft.

Once steamed, remove from the basket and place on a baking sheet on their backs. You can do all those steps ahead of time if you like and put them in the fridge here and grill later.

Next, drizzle with grapeseed oil, and splash with rice wine vinegar, and generously season with salt and pepper. The grapeseed oil can handle the high heat of the grill better than olive oil, and the rice wine caramelizes nicely over the flame. Get the grill nice and hot, and your grill rack is nice and clean, lay the artichokes fast down on the grill and then close the grill for 2 minutes. After 2 minutes, turn the artichoke 45º to get those beautiful cross hatch marks on the heart and grill for another 1-2 minutes. Flip the artichokes on their backs for 30-45 seconds and remove them from the grill.

When you place them on the platter or plate that you are serving on, finish with a drizzle of olive oil (the fancier the better, I prefer a Spanish olive oil) and spoon over some pickled mustard seeds. Place your sauce in a ramekin for dipping. Enjoy!

 

August 1, 2019 by Thor Kitchen 0 Comments

9 Simple Gas Range Cooking Tips

gas range cooking - thor

If you recently made the switch from electric to a gas range, you may be interested in some gas range cooking tips.

Cooking with a gas range is pretty straight-forward, but there are a few things you should know.

In this article, we’ll take a closer look at several gas range cooking tips.

Gas Range Cooking Tips

What is your preference? If you answered gas, congratulations. There are a few things you should know.

Because safety is just as important as a delectable meal, we’ve decided that sharing some important tips for staying safe while mastering a gas range may be a good idea. So, whether you have always used an electric range and are now making the switch to gas, or you are a novice cook ready to learn how to manage a gas range effectively, we’ve got 9 tips for you.

Here are 9 simple gas range cooking tips …

1. You May Have Natural Gas or Propane

Gas ranges do not discriminate against gas. There are two types that are likely readily available to you: natural gas and propane. If your home is designed with one in mind, no need to fret. Most gas ranges can handle both or will come with a conversion kit that allows you to make the switch.

Keep in mind that there is no real difference between the two types of gases it is simply a matter of personal preference and convenience.

2. Gas Heats up Faster Because the Flame Is the Source of Heat.

If you have ever watched a pot of water boil then you know it can take a long time. If you have truly ever done this then you likely had to pot on an electric stove. Why? Gas stoves heat much faster than electric.

See, electric stoves must heat the burner which, in turn, heats your pan and eventually the food inside it. With gas stoves, the flame itself is the source of heat. This means you don’t have to wait on for the burner to get hot – your pan will instantly begin feeling the heat.

3. When You Turn off the Burner, You Turn off the Heat

Are you used to cooking on an electric stove? If so, then you know when you turn off the burner, you are still, in a sense, keeping your food warm thanks to the hot burner. In fact, you may even find that your food will continue to cook.

This is not at all the case with a gas stove. When you turn off the burner, you turn off the flame. And, when you turn off the flame, you turn off the heat.

4. Simmering May Take Some Practice

The one thing that many people have trouble with when it comes to using a gas stove is how to simmer. It takes some practice. You will find that when you turn the flame down low, your pan will continue to receive heat. You then try to turn the flame lower and it goes out. You re-light and try again.

Eventually, with practice, you will find the perfect setting for the simmer function. You will also learn that if a recipe tells you to cook on high, you may want to leave your gas stove on medium. Yes, it heats that well.

5. Learn What Gas Smells Like. and No How to Turn the Gas Off.

As for safety, it is very important to know what natural gas and propane (depending on which you have) smell like. While leaks are very rare, they are possible. You need to be able to recognize it. In addition, knowing how to turn off the gas is crucial. Take the time to learn where the valve switch is and how to use it before you even begin cooking.

6. Be Mindful of the Flame

Remember that you are cooking with an open flame. You need to remain mindful of this. With electric stoves, something mistakenly placed on the burner will be affected by heat before a fire starts. However, with a gas range, the flame is the heat. So, if something comes in contact with it, a fire can start very quickly.

Be sure to watch out for things such as kitchen towels, oven mitts, long hair, loose clothing, etc. And, get in the habit of turning a burner off the moment you remove a pan from it.

7. Keep It Clean

No matter how hard you try, cooking can get messy. Food splatters, drips, spills, and so forth. And while you may want to overlook this mess or believe that it will cook off the next time the oven or stove are turned on, you are leaving yourself with a potentially dangerous situation.

The leftover debris from your cooking may actually catch fire the next time you go to light your burner. So make a point to clean after each use.

8. When Baking, Consider Rotating Your Pans

One of the biggest complaints from bakers is the uneven heating that occurs in a gas oven. Unless you have a convection fan, you may find that your food may bake faster on one side. To prevent any issue with over- or under-cooked food, consider rotating your pans throughout the baking time.

This will help each side to be evenly exposed to the heat.

9. Opt for a Professional-Grade Range

Lastly, if you want to get the most pleasant cooking and baking experience from your gas range, you will want to consider purchasing one that is professional-grade. Initially, you may notice a slightly higher cost than your regular residential range. Over time, however, you will come to learn that the joy that comes from cooking on your new range is worth far more than the price.

Pro-style gas ranges allow you to:

  • Cook with precision.
  • Control your temperature and cooking/baking levels.
  • Enjoy the durability of a range that can handle heavy use.

After all, don’t you want your range to work well and look good for years to come?

Conclusion

Hopefully, you will find that these tips allow you to begin enjoying all the benefits that come with owning and using a gas range.

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