Blooming Glen Farm | green garlic
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green garlic Tag

If you’re like a lot of our market customers and CSA members, you might find yourself puzzled as to what to do with that oddly shaped vegetable you picked up this week. On first glance it can be daunting to figure out how to even begin to use it. But kohlrabi, which comes from Eastern Europe and is the German name for ‘cabbage turnip’, is really just a strange looking sister to the cabbage family and can be used in many similar ways. You can eat the bulbs raw or cooked. Shred them into a salad with some lemon juice or substitute them for cabbage in your favorite coleslaw recipe. They are equally delicious cooked into a stir-fry or vegetable sauté.

I’m new to kohlrabi myself. But, I’ve already found my favorite way to use it… in fritters! Mostly composed of ingredients you’ll already have in your cupboard or refrigerator, they are really simple to whip up and take very little time. You can use them as a side dish or for a lighter meal, pair them with a spring salad mix. However you use them, one thing is for sure, you’ll definitely remember them the next time kohlrabi season comes around!

Start by combining the following ingredients for yogurt dip and refrigerate 30 minutes before serving: 1/3 cup yogurt, 3 Tablespoons chopped fresh dill, 1 teaspoon lemon juice and salt to taste. *For a different sauce, you can replace the dill with cilantro and the lemon with lime juice, and add a bit of honey. Or try mint!

Meanwhile, peel and shred the 4 kohlrabi bulbs into a colander and sqeeze out excess moisture. In a separate bowl combine 2 beaten eggs, 3 Tablespoons dried bread crumbs, 1/4 cup chopped spring onion (you can add in some green garlic too if you have it), 1 teaspoon of salt, 1/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper and black pepper to taste. Add kohlrabi by the spoonful and mix until egg is coating the entire mixture. Heat 4 Tablespoons of olive oil in skillet until small bubbles appear. Form fritter mixture into two-inch balls and drop into skillet. Press gently with spatula to flatten. Cook for 5-7 minutes on each side, or until golden brown. Serves 4-6

Recipe adapted from: From Asparagus to Zucchini, A Guide to Cooking Farm Fresh Produce (3rd ed.). Photos and text by Blooming Glen Farm apprentice Rebecca Metcalf.

Green garlic stalkWoo hoo, another season has begun at Blooming Glen Farm! I’m sure you were as excited as I was about the first share of the year. Fresh strawberries, lots of greens (including gorgeous spinach), turnips, and green onions and garlic have been making their way into our meals all week.

Green garlic is probably a crop that most of us aren’t too familiar with, but can do a lot for meals and nutrition. Green garlic is “baby” garlic, also known as spring garlic. Although it’s smell is as pungent as the mature bulb, the flavor is much more mild and can be enjoyed raw in salads, or cooked, where it sweetens up a bit. The greens can also be used, similar to how one would use chives. As far as nutrition, green garlic contains the same great benefits as garlic:

  • Allicin, a natural antibiotic that helps boost your immune system by blocking infections.
  • Iron, which keeps iron levels high in your blood stream, and ferroportin, a protein that transports iron from the inside of a cell to the outside of it.
  • Vitamin C, a super vitamin that can help with everything from weight management to cancer prevention.
  • Vitamin B6, which has been shown to help prevent heart disease.
  • Selenium, which support our cancer-fighting antioxidant system.
  • Manganese, another mineral that supports antioxidant efforts, as well as our “good” cholesterol (HDL).

Luck for us, there are lots of ways to utilize green garlic in the kitchen. Here are a few yummy recipes to add to your recipe box:

I’ve been using the creamy (and bright!) green garlic dressing below with grain and pasta salads, green salads, and in stirfries this week.  I’ve played with a couple different oils and vinegars and they all turned out tasty. If you don’t have the called-for ingredients, feel free to play around with what you do have on hand!

Green garlic dressingGreen Garlic Dressing
Ingredients
2 stems of green garlic, trim bulbs, include greens
1/4 cup champagne vinegar
1/4 cup sesame oil
1/4 cup water
1 tbs agave honey, plus more to taste
salt and pepper, to taste

Method
Simply add all the ingredients to a food processor or blender and blend until smooth, adding a bit of water if needed. Adjust agave, salt and pepper to taste.

Post sources and recommended links:
What’s New and Beneficial About Garlic, from WHFoods.
Ferroportin on Wikipedia.
Spring Vegetable to Try: Green Garlic, from PopSugar.
Green Garlic: All The Flavor & Nutrients 5 Calories Can Handle from Your Organic Gardening Guide.

Post and photos by Mikaela D. Martin: Blooming Glen CSA member since 2005, board-certified health counselor, and co-founder of Guidance for Growing, an integrative wellness practice in Souderton. Read more about healthy eating and living on her site, http://guidanceforgrowing.com!