Ayama Market Place – IL VERDURAIO

Finding the flavours you’re used to cooking with, is hard as Italians living in South Africa. When first coming to South Africa, we struggled to find the correct vegetables to give us specific flavours we wanted in our food. This proved to be a problem, as Italian cuisine involves lots of flavours and needs to be carried out with precision. We took the bull by the horns on this project, and decided to just plant our own.

We started off small, just planting vegetables for our own use. We found that everything grows here, bigger and tastier, and of course, we were on cloud nine. After a few recipes shared with our South African friends, we realized that we cannot keep these flavours just for ourselves, so started the Ayama Market Place project. It will be your VERDURAIO (vegetable boutique) where you will learn how to harvest, clean, cook and preserve extraordinary Italian food.

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ARTICHOKES, our winter vegetable! AVAILABLE beginning of June!! If you want to purchase them directly from us, place your order HERE.


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Artichoke is a winter vegetable. We planting from End of January and harvest time is between June and September.


  • Cholestrol Fighter
  • Aids In Digestive Health
  • Improves Liver Function
  • Cancer Preventer


  • Before cooking your artichoke, make sure to cut off the stem if it is still attached. You can also trim off the very sharp leaf tips and use your fingers to slightly open up the leaves, allowing it to cook more efficiently.
  • Whether you boil or steam your artichoke, you can tell it’s done when the petal near the centre pulls out easily.
  • Don’t worry, the artichoke is one of the only foods where it is both proper and polite to eat with your fingers.
  • Artichokes can be served hot or cold. To eat, just pull out the outer petals one at a time. Dip it in your favourite sauce and pull the leaves through your teeth, removing the soft pulpy portion. Discard the remaining portion of the leaf.
  • Continue this until all the petals have been removed. Use a spoon and remove the fuzzy centre at the base of the artichoke and discard it. What remains is the heart of the artichoke and it is entirely edible.
  • When the artichokes are cut, they tend to become dark immediately as contact with the air oxidises them very quickly. To avoid this, prepare a large bowl containing water and lemon slices, soak the artichokes in the water as soon as you have cut them.

A good tip is to wash your hands with lemon juice to prevent them from becoming black.


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September 2020

First Social Distancing Event, we promise you something unforgettable.

Ayama Wine Farm will be hosting the Third Artichokes Festival in the Voor Paardeberg. OPEN to all #ayamafanatics, this gastronomic event is becoming an annual appointment for those loving good food and healthy artichokes. This year’s program is promising to be sparkling and tasty, even more than previous editions and respecting Social Distancing Rules. We are planning to bring the Festival to your home without precluding the one held on site. All details will be revealed soon. Early booking is suggested! Pre-booking is necessary for the onsite Festival as no Tickets will be sold at the gate on the day.

TICKETS price, work in progress! We will not disappoint you. Hang on… just finalizing details!

Limited to 70 Adults attending each day, on Ayama location.

Limited to 6 Adults per home if Festival is delivered to your house!

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