This root is probably one of my favorite root vegetables around. I have been growing this in my garden for the past two years with great success. It grows like a weed but can easily be controlled as long as you remember to dig up all the tubers in the middle of winter. Last year, after it snowed numerous times, I went out to the garden to try to find some to add to dinner, and with four plants planted in the early spring, I ended up with a dozen little sunchokes.
This year I actually had one plant that grew to over 10 feet and flowered. This species of sunflower, with no relation to the artichoke, is also refereed to as a Jerusalem Artichoke, and are native to the Eastern parts of North America. The tuber resembles ginger, but when eaten raw, it tastes like water chestnuts, when cooked, it tastes like a mild artichoke.