Wild Garlic: A Natural Remedy to Help Fight Colds and Flu

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Wild garlic, also known as Ramsons or formally known as Allium Ursinum, is delicious and nutritious, and can be used in various recipes. I would like to share a few fabulous recipes ideas. You may have frozen this seasonal plant from earlier in the year, and at this time it could be very beneficial to use, as you will be adding compounds that help the immune system fight germs. Your wild garlic may help prevent the common cold or the flu, and it could also reduce the severity of symptoms, if you are already feeling unwell.

As a seasonal plant that grows wild, and also is a perennial, self-seeding plant, wild garlic is edible at all stages of growth. Unlike domestic garlic, it is the leaves, rather than the bulbs of wild garlic, that are valued, as the bulbs are delicious, but very small. This plant can be eaten raw or cooked.

The leaves can make a great addition to salads, used as herbs, in sandwiches, or as an ingredient for a sauce or dressing, such as a substitute for pesto or basil. When cooked the leaves can be used as a vegetable as you would prepare and serve spinach, blanched and pureed as a sauce, in stews, risottos, quiche, or soups. The taste of wild garlic leaves is very similar to the domestic bulb, but not quite as strong. Wild garlic does have many of the same healthy properties. If you have never tried it before, give it a try this spring, and have fun foraging for it whilst taking a fabulous walk in the woods! The leaves can be eaten raw or lightly cooked. Be sure to wash them well, some recipes suggest blanching the leaves for a few minutes in boiling water. Wild garlic can be stirred into risottos or omelettes, added to soups or used in sauces to accompany meat and fish.

The leaves, stems, flowers and bulbs are edible. You can use Wild Garlic anywhere where you would use regular garlic, the flavour is however milder. Even the stems and unopened flowers can to be added to other dishes such salads or stir-fries. The opened flowers can also be eaten; this flavour tends to be stronger than the leaves, and can also be added to salads or use as a garnish.

Wild Garlic Pesto

  • Fresh basil, roughly chopped
  • Wild garlic, roughly chopped
  • Pine nut
  • Olive oil
  • Parmesan finely grated
  • Lemon zest only, finely grated
  • Lemon juice

Grind the basil and wild garlic in a mortar with a pestle or food processor to release the natural oils. Then, add the pine nuts and lemon zest and grind. Once combined, add the olive oil to make a paste and grind in the Parmesan. Add a squeeze of lemon and season.

Wild Garlic Mash

  • Floury potatoes, cut into chunks
  • Unsalted butter
  • Wild garlic leaves, sliced
  • Grating of nutmeg

Put the potatoes in a pan of cold salted water and bring to the boil. Simmer for 20 minutes until very tender, then drain and return to the pan briefly over a low heat to dry. Melt the butter in a small pan and fry the wild garlic for 30 seconds. Mash the potatoes with the cream, nutmeg and most of the garlicky butter. Stir through the fried wild garlic and the rest of the butter. Season and serve.

Wild Garlic and Potato Soup

  • Oil for frying
  • Onion, chopped
  • Potatoes, peeled & diced
  • Vegetable stock
  • Wild garlic leaves, shredded
  • Crème fraîche
  • Wild garlic flowers

Heat the oil in a large saucepan. Add the onion and fry on a low heat for 8 minutes, until softened. Add the potatoes and stock. Bring to the boil, reduce the heat and simmer for 20 minutes, until the potatoes are tender. Add the wild garlic leaves, and keep a few shreds for garnishing the soup. Blend in a blender or food processor until smooth. Reheat in the pan, and then season to taste. You can serve with a swirl of crème fraîche, a few shreds of wild garlic and a few wild garlic flowers.

 

 

 

 

 

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