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a tall, thistlelike composite plant, Cynara scolymus, native to the Mediterranean region, of which the numerous scalelike bracts and receptacle of the immature flower head are eaten as a vegetable.
the large, rounded, closed flower head itself.
Contemporary Examples

Page Six says they dined on mussel soup, crayfish and artichoke risotto at a tony Venetian restaurant.
Venice Wedding Bells for George Clooney and Amal Alamuddin? Barbie Latza Nadeau June 9, 2014

So the next day I went out and I bought a microwave oven and I made an artichoke in the microwave.
The Queen of the Cookbook Sarah Whitman-Salkin February 22, 2010

The question is whether fashion is like an onion or an artichoke: Peel away the layers and is there a heart?
Top Runway Faux Pas Ana Finel Honigman July 14, 2009

He paused—artfully peeled an artichoke—then pounced once more.
‘Awful Middle-Class Queens’ Kevin Sessums April 8, 2009

There, artichoke interrogation experiments were taking place at a safe house called Haus Waldorf.
What Cold War CIA Interrogators Learned from the Nazis Annie Jacobsen February 10, 2014

Historical Examples

He says moreover that the artichoke grows near the river Indus.
The Deipnosophists, or Banquet of the Learned of Athenus Athenus

The stick remained in the air, and Pussy came back to the house like an ‘artichoke.’
Rico and Wiseli Johanna Spyri

Cut in four a boiled and well-seasoned cauliflower, squeeze out the water, and use to fill the artichoke bottoms.
The Hotel St. Francis Cook Book Victor Hirtzler

Therefore it is clear to my mind that the word was not ‘artichoke,’ but ‘aristocrat,’ that he used.
Rico and Wiseli Johanna Spyri

“And your fine coat always smells of musk,” jeered the artichoke.
Myths and Legends of the Sioux Marie L. McLaughlin

Also called globe artichoke. a thistle-like Eurasian plant, Cynara scolymus, cultivated for its large edible flower head containing many fleshy scalelike bracts: family Asteraceae (composites)
the unopened flower head of this plant, which can be cooked and eaten
See Jerusalem artichoke

1530s, from articiocco, Northern Italian variant of Italian arcicioffo, from Old Spanish alcarchofa, from Arabic al-hursufa “artichoke.” The Northern Italian variation probably is from influence of ciocco “stump.”

Folk etymology has twisted the word in English; the ending is probably influenced by choke, and early forms of the word in English include archecokk, hortichock, artychough, hartichoake. The plant was known in Italy by 1450s, brought to Florence from Naples in 1466, and introduced in England in the reign of Henry VIII. French artichaut (16c.), German Artischocke (16c.) both are also from Italian.


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