Burdock with Fresh Thyme

With its earthy, yet delicate flavor burdock, tastes like artichoke hearts. Look for burdock in health-food stores, local farmers' markets, or Asian produce markets. Burdock roots come in a variety of shapes and sizes, but are generally long like a carrot or parsnip. If you can't find fresh thyme, substitute 1/2 teaspoon dried.

1 burdock root (about 8 ounces), scrubbed and trimmed, but not peeled
2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
1 clove garlic, minced
3 tablespoons dry white wine
2 teaspoons fresh thyme or 1/2 teaspoon dried
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon pepper

1 Cut the burdock crosswise into 1/4-inch-thick slices. As you work, drop the burdock into a bowl of water with a little lemon juice or vinegar to prevent discoloration.
2 In a medium saucepan, bring 1 quart of water and 1 tablespoon of the red wine vinegar to a boil over high heat. Add the burdock and return to a boil. Reduce the heat to a simmer and cook until the burdock is tender, about 10 minutes. Drain.
3 In a medium nonstick skillet, heat the oil over medium heat. Add the garlic and cook for 30 seconds until the garlic is fragrant. Add the drained burdock and cook until lightly coated, about 1 minute.
4 Add the wine, thyme, salt, pepper, and the remaining 1 tablespoon vinegar, and cook for 1 to 2 minutes to blend the flavors.

Makes 4 servings.
Per serving: 80 calories, 3.5g total fat (0.5g saturated), 0mg cholesterol, 1.9g dietary fiber, 10g carbohydrate, 1g protein, 295mg sodium.