St. Erasmus Artichoke

Sant'Erasmo, 30141 Venezia VE, Italia

Simona Bertolaso



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Tender, fleshy, spiny and elongated, the Sant’Erasmo artichoke has dark violet bracts. In the past, in the gardens of the lagoon, it was fertilized with scoasse (garbage, in Venetian dialect) or with shells and crab shells, which were used to correct the acidity of the soil.
For centuries now, in the Venetian lagoon, particularly in Sant’Erasmo, Vignole, Lio Piccolo, Malamocco and Mazzorbo, these artichokes of great quality have been produced, the fruit of the work and tenacity of farmers who, despite the fashions of the global market, manage to preserve ancient flavors.
This tradition continues especially in Sant’Erasmo, whose lands allow the cultivation of tasty vegetables among which the violet artichoke which took its name from this island.
In Sant’Erasmo the first artichokes are harvested towards the beginning of April, these artichokes, which are literally crazy for true connoisseurs, are the "castraure", that is the apical fruit of the artichoke plant that is cut first in order to allow the development of other 18-20 side artichokes (botoli) just as tender and tasty. The "castraure" are famous for their unique and particular taste, a very tender artichoke that is a combination of flavors, with a slight bitter taste, which enhance its inestimable organoleptic value.

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