A week ago I harvested my first Jerusalem artichoke. I thought I would get a few small roots, since the plant had been attacked several times and had blown over during the Santa Ana winds. I was surprised to dig up a very large root, about the size and appearance of a brain.
The next day, the burrowing animals made a dash towards the remaining tubers and created a very large hole necessary to cart off the goods. So I harvested the other plant, and got another really large brain.
I really like the smoky flavor and texture of these chokes, and have let it be known that my temperamental potatoes are in danger of being replaced by a new BFF (best food forever). I think they got the message. After tearing out some old tomato plants, I found some really great potato plants, and they are trying their best to grab my attention.
I am now in the process of preparing soil for an additional choke bed. Thanks to Donna for introducing this new food to the locavores and for giving me the cuttings. Many folks at the community garden are also getting cuttings this year. They appreciate the perennial and drought-tolerant qualities, and it is just so cool to have pretty flowers all summer and then get all this great brain food at the end of the season.
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