Wash the artichokes and cut the stems off (leave about an inch). You can snip off the tips of each leaf but it's not required. Put in pot of cold water with several cloves of garlic, peeled and smashed (to smash, put un-peeled garlic on cutting board and lay the flat of a wide knife blade over it. Slam your fist onto it. The peel will easily fall away and the garlic will be sufficiently smashed), a large slice of lemon, a teaspoon of salt, and two bay leaves. Bring to a boil, covered; let cook until outer leaves begin to separate and fall of the chokes (anywhere from 20 to 45 minutes). Drain. Serve warm or cold.
|Cooked artichoke: the outer leaves are starting to fall off.|
Sauce options are myriad, but an easy one consists of equal parts lemon juice and water with a bit of melted butter or olive oil plus salt, pepper, and garlic. I like to pick out the boiled garlic and mash it in a bowl, then add lemon, water, and butter before heating in the microwave.