Sometimes you just have to eat french-fried artichokes for breakfast, with chipotle sauce on the side.
That’s what we decided when driving through Castroville, the self-proclaimed artichoke capital of the world. We saw this road sign and said to each other, “Well we’ve never tried that before.”
Good decision. Friends, you have not truly lived until you’ve eaten a greasy plate of fried artichokes in the morning. The shop also offered artichoke bread, artichoke cupcakes and cream of artichoke soup. (When Champa saw the menu, she started imitating Bubba from Forrest Gump, reciting the many dishes you can make with shrimp.)
As with food at the state fair, we didn’t make the mistake of thinking too hard about the nutritional value of our meal or, for that matter, about our health more generally, at least for a few minutes. As recent members of a university community, we just considered ourselves cultural anthropologists doing original research on regional culinary traditions.
We’ve been doing this regularly during our trip, looking for local vendors and shops offering foods we can’t buy back home.
On Monday afternoon, for instance, we saw this hot dog stand at Avila Beach, near San Luis Obispo. They were selling a “California hot dog” and other items such as shave ice that you don’t usually see back east.
If you’ve read this far, we welcome your suggestions about regional foods we should sample as we head south to San Diego and then east through Arizona, Texas, Louisiana, Alabama and points beyond. We’ll eat them only for anthropological reasons. We promise.
What should we try?
One thought on “French-Fried Artichokes”
We’re going to add this to our itinerary for our October California trip! And hope to settle once and for all an ongoing family debate about the proper pronunciation of “artichoke”. Linda