For me one of the true signs (and smells) of Spring is Wild Garlic. It’s one of the most easily identifiable and unmistakable foragable foods. You may very well smell it in the woods before you spot its long lush leaves. Look for it in semi shaded moist woodland areas, river banks are a good place to start. Later in the season it bursts into bloom with white flowers which are also edible. Once you’ve found your ‘wild garlic spot’ you can return year on year and confidently identify it from the very first shoots of spring growth. Nothing tastes as good as free food so track some down and cook up a storm with one (or more) of these recipes.
Bintu at Recipes from a Pantry shares one of the best and most versatile ways to use it – a Wild Garlic Pesto. Once you’ve made it you can then use it in a variety of ways including my Wild Garlic Pesto Pinwheels and Wild Garlic Crusted Roast Beef. Jane at The Hedgecombers had duly been combing hedges to make Beef in Guinness with Wild Garlic Dumplings. She describes it as the mother of all stews – rich, comforting and full of delicious flavours.
Soup is on the menu from both Lost in Food and Munchies and Munchkins. Wild Garlic Soup and Sweet Potato Wild Garlic and Spinach. I reckon adding a bunch of wild garlic to pretty much any soup would give it a wonderful lift. To accompany how about my Wild Garlic Tattie Scones or Janice at Farmersgirl Kitchen’s Cheese and Wild Garlic Scones. Light and crumbly with a really tasty savoury flavour – serve them with butter or more cheese!
Kavey shows us how to have wild garlic all year round by blitzing it with oil and freezing. With it she makes a simple wild garlic, mushroom and bacon pasta. Kate at Veggie Desserts adds the leaves to a salad for a fragrant kick. Sweet Potato, Kale and Wild Garlic Salad. Again I’m sure the leaves and/or flowers could give a lift to a multitude of salads. Unlike Miranda I’m a huge fan of the Savoury Muffin. Choclette of Tin and Thyme has created the mouthwatering sounding Beetroot, Walnut, Wild Garlic and Goat’s Cheese Brunch Muffins. (there’s even some surprise chocolate in them!)