Dinner at the Ranch

Lokelani-style tacos with Braised artichokes

Photo of Lokelani-style tacos with Braised artichokes

Make-your-own tacos with barbecue tempeh, pico de gallo, cheddar cheese, guacamole, grated carrot, lettuce and flame-toasted corn tortillas.

Artichokes braised with garlic served with a chive-tarragon dipping sauce.

Artichokes with chive-tarragon dipping sauceArtichokes

Artichokes are an exotic treat for us: they can’t practically be grown here, and we enjoy them infrequently. The sauce is simply vegan mayonnaise with crushed garlic, a lot of fresh chives and a couple of drops of tarragon essential oil. We’ve found that to be a good way to get a clear tarragon flavor, as the fresh herb when grown here tends to be too mild.

The braising is simply a little water (like 3″ in the pot) with sea salt, garlic, pepper, bay leaf and a little extra virgin olive oil. Prop them up on their bases and simmer until tender. We prefer the braising technique as they don’t end up as waterlogged as boiling would get them. Steaming doesn’t give you an opportunity to infuse them with flavor and because the cooking time is so long, there’s a risk of boiling dry, ruining the ‘chokes with an unpleasant burnt flavor. You still have to watch them with the braising, of course, but there’s more water.

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