On my last post I discussed some easy to find mushrooms and greens. Today I’ll share a super easy recipe to use wild garlic which is about to explode all over uk woodland. Easy to smell before you see, white flowers and deep green leaves, this fragrant and tasty green is perfect to use in a wide variety of dishes. like me, you may even remember it from your own childhood, it is also known as Bears Garlic, Ramsons or wood garlic.
Wild garlic identification
Once you are confident you have got your ID (beware of lords and ladies, Bluebells and Lily of the Valley!) – I always break a leaf from the bunch I have found and ensure its a powerful garlic hit, trying not to get too much garlic smell on my hands to mistake other plants. Make sure too that if you are foraging with kids that you ID each collection/bunch as other plants may be growing in an amongst so its important not to stray from the area and onto other plants. Wild garlic grows in ancient woodland all over the UK, especially damp, shady areas – usually by a water source, stream or small brook. The whole of the plant is edible and you can use the leaves, pickle the buds and flowers like capers too. the beautiful white flowers are reminiscent of little star explosions. As with any foraging make sure that you leave plenty behind for nature, and never take more than you need. A great site for ID I like to use is here
I get the plants home and give them a quick rinse, the smell of garlic will fill the house (something I love!) and is perfect to add to salads, stir fry’s or any place you like to use garlic. Its quite powerful an I have found that the pungent flavour develops over a few hours. I found a perfect and super easy way to dip into the wild garlic world is to make wild garlic butter!
This is embarrassingly easy to do, even if you decide to make your own butter – you could get the kids to make some butter with my butter in a jar recipe whilst you prepare the greens!
1) gather two bunches of wild garlic , bring home and rinse. Chop into a small dice.
2) make the butter, if you are going to otherwise buy some salted butter.
3) smush the butter in a bowl until its pappy
4) mix in the wild garlic ( to taste) I added loads as I love the green colour and the flavour, my kids love this bit.
5) scoop the butter between two sheets of cling film and roll into a sausage shape
6) chill until firm
7) use as you wish! I freeze mine and cut and use discs of it as I need to. If you want you can decorate the butter with the flowers.
I teamed my wild garlic butter with my easy bread recipe to make delicious garlic bread with cheese and mushrooms.
It goes equally as well with steak or melted over chips with parmesan.