Easy French Food and Recipes

Jerusalem Artichoke Recipe

This Jerusalem artichoke recipe uses a simple and healthy cooking method. Vegetables are cooked to soft, sweet perfection with next to no effort.

Sunchoke, Topinambour

jerusalem artichoke recipe

Jerusalem artichokes are also called sunchokes. Here in France they are topinambours, and this name is used by some English speakers as well.

The poor little topinambour has not had an easy time of it in France. It seems that the French had to eat way too many of this easy growing root vegetable during WWII. After the war, they never wanted to see a topinambour again.

Several generations later, there may be some hope for the knobby fellow, and it now puts in a regular appearance at the grocery store. It comes into season in late fall and I am always happy to grab a sack full. Apparently some people find something disagreeable in the taste, but to me they just taste yummy and slightly sweet.

You can serve this Jerusalem artichoke recipe like you would turnips - as a side dish for various meats. It would be just fabulous with duck confit.

This recipe uses a cooking method known as à l'etouffée or à l'étuvée. It is a great way to cook many different things. Food cooks in its own juice and the results are quite flavorful.

A l'étuvée . . .

  • Use a skillet with a tight fitting lid. Because it really retains the heat and acts like an oven, I like to use my Staub skillet.
  • Add a little butter . . . Just enough to keep things tasty.
  • A little flavor . . . The shallot in this recipe turns sweet and soft. No need to worry about it turning bitter like can happen in open pan sauteeing.
  • And time. No effort on your part other than a little patience. You can cover your vegetables and literally forget them. Thirty minutes later they are perfect.

Many times you won't need to add any water at all to the skillet, as in this Jerusalem artichoke recipe. The water from the vegetables is enough to create the steam that the they will cook in. For another tasty à l'étuvée recipe, try these French green beans.

Topinambours étuvées

Preparation time: 10 minutes
Cooking time: 30 min

Makes about 4 side dish servings


  • 1 1/2 pounds topinambour (Jerusalem artichokes)
  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 1 shallot
  • salt and pepper


  1. Peel the topinambour with a paring knife, eliminating any too fussy to bother with knobs. Wash and dry. Slice into 1/8 inch thick rounds.
  2. Peel and mince the shallot.
  3. Place a skillet with a tight fitting lid on very low heat. Add the butter, then the shallots, then the topinambour slices. Place the lid on the skillet.
  4. Cook for about 30 minutes or until the vegetables are very tender. Stir the vegetables no more than once or twice as they are cooking. Season to taste with salt and pepper.

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