Sunchokes, those little crunchy tubers with endless possibilities, are on menus everywhere at the moment. Roasted, pureed, or even made into a cocktail (?!), they are a welcome bridge for chefs between the greens-and-sweet-potato-based produce of the winter and the spring bounty to come.
You might know them by another term, “Jerusalem Artichokes,” but they aren’t Jewish or in the artichoke family. They are actually the root of a perennial sunflower, and they have found increasing presence on plates in the past few years. Austin, Texas, home to one of our favorite Southern food scenes, just hosted SXSW and the thousands of people who flocked to the city to attend. But there’s more to Texas than just Austin, so we added our favorite sunchoke dish from San Antonio too.
Sunchokes shine bright right at the cusp of spring, so enjoy them now, you Texans. They’ll be gone before you know it, just like we tourists!
Barley Swine is always inventive, and their Sunchoke “Cereal” proves it: fried sunchoke and parsnips on top of sunchoke ice cream with hot milk infused with hay poured tableside. Get all that?
Sunchokes play well with spice in this Sunchoke Curry with Japanese sweet potato, beef tendon, and herbs.
Not technically a dish, the French Quandry, a cocktail includes cognac and lemon to bring out earthy edges and bright notes at the same time.
The Sunchoke Custard at this Japanese restaurant has elements of beer with malt, orange, and yeast.