A week of wild garlic…

Every year, around this time, I see so many posts on blogs and Instagram of people sharing their wild garlic creations. And each year I’m so envious!!! I’ve tried wild garlic once, having paid a fortune for it at a local ‘posh’ greengrocers, and I know it’s lovely, but I’ve never found any locally to be able to forage for myself…until this week!

I’ve been keeping my eyes peeled for weeks around where I walk Bob every morning; I know that wild garlic tends to grow in wooded areas, and where we walk isn’t wooded at all. Except for one small area, and this week, there it was! I finally found my own local supply of wild garlic…

In this small wooded area, running along a path we walk up and down regularly, is an area of bountiful, gorgeous wild garlic.

Oh the joy! I cannot tell you how excited I was!!! And by the look of it, no one knows it’s there, or maybe just doesn’t know what it is, which is even better πŸ™‚

I immediately sent the photo above to Kellie, who is a wild garlic guru, to double check my find, but I was pretty sure I was right. I collected some there and then, using one of the nappy sacks I can for cleaning up after Bob, and returned the next couple of days with bigger bags and some gloves and foraged to my hearts content.

So, there’s been lots of careful washing and drying of leaves and stalks and flowers in my kitchen all week, the smell has been amazing, it’s got such a lovely smell, not as strong as bulb garlic, but you can tell what it is; and there’s been lots of concoctions, which I am sharing below. It honestly feels like such a gift from nature, and has made me smile all week; the pure simplicity of collecting, cooking and eating gorgeous fresh food direct form the earth is wonderful – I totally get those of your who grow your own food!

The leaves, stalks and flowers are all edible, and all have different strengths; the stalks have a stronger flavour than the leaves, and the flowers are stronger again, but none as strong as bulb garlic. You can eat them all raw or cooked. You can sautΓ© the leaves like spinach, you chop it and add it to salad, the possibilities are endless. So here’s a few rough ideas to tempt you, apologies for the lack of quantities, I’ve just provided lists of ingredients and suggestions…

Chargrilled red pepper & WG harissa

Long red peppers, chargrilled, peeled and deseeded

Wild garlic leaves and stalks, washed and dried

Tabil spice mix (toasted cumin, coriander & caraway seeds, ground)

Pul biber flakes

Olive oil

Lemon juice

All in a blender and whizzed tougher.

WG & preserved lemon harissa

Wild garlic leaves and stalks, washed and dried

Spring onions, whites and greens roughly chopped

Half a preserved lemon, roughly chopped

Ground cumin & coriande

Pul biber flakes

Olive oil

Lemon juice

All in a blender and whizzed together, but not for too long, it’s nice rustic.

WG flower homous

Make your standard homous recipe but leave out the garlic, and add some carefully picked wild garlic flowers at the end, stirring them in by hand. Leave it a day before eating it for the flavour to develop.

WG cream cheese

Whizz up WG leaves and stalks, or just the stalks, or just the leaves, with your choice of cream cheese.

WG & pumpkin seed dairy free pesto

WG leaves and stalks chopped up with toasted pumpkin seeds, olive oil and lemon juice. Add your choice of cheese at will πŸ™‚

WG & spring onion salsa verde

Wild garlic leaves and stems, washed and dried

Spring onions, whites and greens, roughly chopped

Homemade apple cider vinegar

Pomegranate molasses

Ground cumin & coriander

Pul biber chilli flakes

Olive oil

Chop all together in a blender to the consistency of your choice.

WG, tahini & yoghurt sauce

Blend WG leaves and stalks with tahini, yoghurt and lemon juice, and use at will like this, or add to other ingredients to create a dip, like below

Spiced carrot & WG, tahini & yoghurt dip

Carrots cooked in olive oil with red onion and garlic and my Moroccan spice mix, whizzed up with some of the tahini and yogurt sauce from above.

And to finish…

This was a mixture of some of the WG cream cheese mixed with the WG pesto, plus some boiled chunks of sweet potato and topped with wild garlic flowers.

I’ve also sautΓ©d leaves with added spinach and quinoa, and eaten a fair amount of raw leaves in the process too!

I hope I didn’t lose you halfway down the page with all of my WG creations?! If you find some, I hope you enjoy it as much as I have πŸ™‚

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37 thoughts on “A week of wild garlic…

  1. kellie anderson

    What a wonderfully generous post, sharing all of your wonderful, very Food Bod-esque, ideas. I’m so glad I was able to help in some small way. You’ve got the best of this giving and so versatile wild food plant. Bravo, Elaine xx

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  2. Johanne Lamarche

    You didn’t lose me at all Elaine!!! It was a fascinating read that had my head spinning(in a good way!) at your ingenious creations with a patch of wild garlic!! It is called ramps here and very popular seasonally in the best farm to table restaurants. Expensive in farmers markets too. I was thinking you need a pop up restaurant/food truck once a year to share your outstanding and creative concoctions with wild garlic. Must be so good for your health! There is a garlic festival in Pennsylvania that I know you would enjoy. Have a great weekend!

    Johanne Lamarche

    >

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    1. Elaine @ foodbod Post author

      I’m not sure about a stall, the couple of people who have seen me walking home with my bags of leaves have asked what I’ve got, and when I’ve told them they’ve had no idea what I’m talking about! I’ve been trying to educate my neighbours…whilst also not letting them know where to find the plants!!

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  3. Mary

    Elaine, I am so jealous. Unfortunately I wouldn’t know a wild garlic plant if I saw one. And I guess they are out there. I love all your ideas for using it. How wonderful! Now I have to find out if and where it might grow. It must be a Spring plant and we are in Autumn going to Winter.

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  4. Laura

    So impressed Elaine – how did I miss wild garlic in my 25 years in Yorkshire!? The best we get here is wild rosemary. So funny your post just came up in my reader after Petra’s and like you I’m going to be giving the dehydrating trick a go!

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  5. Pingback: Here We Go!!! – LET'S TALK ABOUT IT

    1. Elaine @ foodbod Post author

      I’m loving it! I’ve made even more things since then, we’ve been foraging almost daily – although Bob doesn’t really assist, just jumps around, all over the plants, barking at me πŸ˜€πŸ˜€

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  6. Pingback: Wild Garlic Meatballs | Food Eat Love

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