Spiny artichoke from Albenga
It is the variety, grown and conditioned in our city and throughout its plain, on the Savona and Imperia coast, also known as "Violetto Spinoso di Albenga" or "Violetto grosso di Albenga" and as one of "the 4 of Albenga "; together with the Trombetta courgette, the Cuore di Bue tomato and the Violet asparagus, in fact, it has become a typical production of the area and one of the main symbols of the Ingauna city.
The Spinoso di Albenga artichoke is characteristic for the consistency of the internal bracts (leaves), which are exceptionally tender, crunchy and sweet and this characteristic makes it an important ingredient for various recipes. The reference to the purple color is not accidental: it is in fact impossible to confuse it with other species of central and southern Italy, as well as for the conical shape of the flower head, for the external watercolor leaves of dark green with purple hues and the yellowish thorns that make it easily identifiable compared to other varieties of artichoke.
It can be eaten both raw and cooked. Less fibrous and with a more delicate flavor than its Sardinian cousin, it is particularly appreciated when raw in pinzimonio or in salads, while when cooked it can be used for the preparation of excellent sauces and risottos, or for the fillings of green cakes and omelettes.