Roast Jerusalem artichokes, soffritto and hazelnuts

Roast Jerusalem artichokes, soffritto and hazelnuts

By
From
Real Food by Mike
Serves
4
Photographer
Alan Benson

Jerusalem artichokes come in lots of odd shapes, so you may need to cook them in different ways. If they are shaped like an egg, you’ll want to cut them in half. If they are the little knobbly ones that look like ginger, break the nodules from each other and leave them as they are. The soffritto keeps well in the refrigerator for up to 1 week. It is also delicious with a fried egg for breakfast or as a dip with some nice crusty bread.

Ingredients

Quantity Ingredient
1kg jerusalem artichokes
60ml extra-virgin olive oil
1/2 lemon, thinly sliced, plus 1/2 lemon, juiced
1 handful activated hazelnuts
1 handful rocket leaves

Soffritto

Quantity Ingredient
60ml extra-virgin olive oil
1 large brown onion, chopped
5 garlic cloves, roughly chopped
4 red capsicums, roughly chopped
3 fresh long red chillies
3 purple shallots, roughly chopped
50g tinned piquillo peppers
2 teaspoons caster sugar
2 tablespoons sherry vinegar

Method

  1. For the soffritto, warm two-thirds of the olive oil in a large frying pan over medium heat. Add the onion, garlic, capsicum, chillies and shallots and fry for about 5 minutes until golden. Keep stirring the mixture for another 5 minutes until it starts to caramelise. Add the piquillo peppers – the temperature shock will release the caramelisation from the bottom of the pan. Add the sugar and stir until the mixture is a dark crimson. Add the vinegar to stop the cooking process. Remove the pan from the heat and add the remaining olive oil. Season to taste with 2 pinches salt and set aside.
  2. Preheat the oven to 200°C.
  3. Place the artichokes in a roasting tin and drizzle them with half the olive oil, tossing to coat. Add a generous sprinkling of salt and place the tin in the oven. The skin will start to blister and become crisp, while the inside will become soft and buttery. After 10 minutes, add a scattering of lemon slices to the pan. Give the artichokes another 15–20 minutes or until, when you test them with a skewer, they are soft on the inside and beautifully caramelised on the outside. Remove the tin from the oven and allow the artichokes to sit for the flavours to develop.
  4. Serve the artichokes warm from the oven or at room temperature with the soffritto, hazelnuts and the rocket, which has been tossed with the remaining olive oil and lemon juice.

Medicinal Benefit

  • Jerusalem artichokes contain inulin, a low-calorie type of fructan and inert carbohydrate, which isn’t metabolised inside the body, making them ideal for diabetics. They also contain antioxidant vitamins such as vitamin C, vitamin A for good vision and vitamin E for neutralising unstable molecules that damage cells. They’re rich in potassium, for balancing bodily fluids and for a healthy heartbeat.
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