A silvery, green colored vegetable that looks like flat celery stalks with a flavor resembling an artichoke, salsify and celery, only slightly more bitter. The head and large leaves are removed before the stalks are prepared for food markets. Cardoon has a noticeable aftertaste that will be present if the stalks are not pre-soaked in salt water prior to preparation. It is traditionally grown and served in the Mediterranean regions of Europe, where it is sautéed, deep fried, baked, or steamed for salads, as a side dish, or in main dishes. Cardoon can generally be found from early winter to early spring in well-stocked produce markets. Refrigerated fresh or cooked cardoon should be stored for a week or less before being served. This vegetable is also known as edible thistle, cardone, cardi, or cardoni.
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