Friday, 28 March 2014

Wild Garlic

Picking wild garlic is always something I really look forward to. At this time of year it is in abundance in many woodlands and unlike a lot of foraged foods it is almost impossible to miss. You are likely to smell it before you see it but when you look around it will be everywhere.

A short walk from where I used to live I have a favourite spot that I have been using for the past couple of years. This week I happened to be passing and couldn't miss the opportunity to stop off and check if it was ready yet. I was in the area about a month ago but was too early, this time it was in perfect condition.

The best time to pick is before the flowers start to appear, as with a lot of plants the leaves turn slightly bitter after this. I helped myself to a carrier bag full and drove back home with car full of the scent of garlic. This year, to make my harvest last a bit longer, I decided long before I picked the garlic that I was going to make wild garlic butter.

After a quick rinse I placed the wild garlic in a blender and shredded it quite finely, I then added some softened butter and combined. Following this I scooped the mixture out and rolled into cylinders inside some greaseproof paper.

Altogether it only took five minutes and I'll definitely be doing it again next years. The butter will now go in the freezer and I'll take from it as I need to. It will add fantastic flavour to all sorts of dishes from pasta to jacket potatoes to homemade garlic bread. I saved a few fresh leaves to eat on the day, these will only keep for a couple of days so unless you live near a good spot this is a great way to store them.

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