Artichokes (carxofa) have, since the early 20th century, been the main vegetable grown in the delta of the Llobregat river given the fertile soil and the mild climate. Specifically, in the district of El Baix Llobregat three artichoke varieties are grown: white artichoke from Tudela, camús from Bretaña and artichoke from Benicarló. Although they can be found in markets throughout the whole year, production is concentrated above all in March. These artichokes can also be bought during the Fira Avícola Raça Prat which is held in El Prat de Llobregat in mid-December. The same city is the venue for a carxofada for the public on the last Sunday of March. During this fair it is also possible to sample the various preparation options. Another artichoke-themed festival is the Festa de la Carxofa Popular which is held in February in Sant Boi de Llobregat. More than four tonnes of this product are used and, apart from the tasting, the festival includes artichoke eating contests. Amongst the dishes which use artichoke there are two typical ones which are outstanding in Catalan cuisine: cod Catalan style (fried cod with potatoes, peas and fried artichokes), and olla de recapte, a pot of vegetables with green beans, Swiss chard, potatoes and pieces of boiled artichoke. This vegetable can also be eaten directly from the oven or char-grilled, or as an accompaniment to a stew or lamb.
Baix Llobregat

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