STEAMING ARTICHOKES: This technique, we found, yields a more intensely flavored vegetable. Fill a large pot, fitted with a steamer insert, with 3" of water. Bring the water to a boil over high heat, place the artichokes in the steamer, cover, and cook until tender, about 30-40 minutes. Test for doneness by carefully plucking a large, outer leaf from the artichoke. If it pulls out easily, the artichoke is done.