Benefits of Artichoke
The globe artichoke, or Cynara scolymus, is the immature flowers of a thistle plant and is known as one of the oldest cultivated vegetables in the world. Most likely, artichokes originated in the Mediterranean, although they have been seen in ancient Egyptian writings as symbols of sacrifice and fertility. The Spanish eventually brought them to California in 1600, but they didn t actually catch on with Americans until the 1920s. California provides nearly 100 percent of the artichoke crop in the United States, with Castroville, a town in the California Central Coast farm country, calling itself the artichoke center of the world. There are several varieties of artichokes such as Green Globe, Desert Globe, Big Heart, and Imperial Star, ranging in color from dark purple to pale green.