How to Trim an Artichoke
By Brett Moore, About.com Guide
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Step Four. Scoop out the base.
At this point, the artichoke can be used for stuffing. Cut off the stem flush with the base. Cook the artichoke in boiling water for 40 to 50 minutes. Remove and scoop out the purple leaves and "hairs" that cover the artichoke heart. Note: Artichokes discolor rapidly when exposed to air. If you are not using the artichokes right away, place the uncooked artichokes in some water with lemon juice.