Thursday, 12 April 2018

Wild for Garlic - revisited


What I love about seasonal food is the excitement of having in your kitchen that particular ingredient you missed in the rest of the year. 

Back in my farmer’s market this weekend I found wild garlic again in the stalls. Some people are able to forage for it. The plant is very easy to identify and can grow sparingly on the riverbanks and in the woods of England. If you are thinking of foraging, make sure you do your research: wild garlic leaves look similar to Lilly of the Valley, that is a poisonous plant.

A few years ago I posted three recipes here using wild garlic. This time I decided to make something new and easy. Great for a last-minute snack for visitors. As I also said previously in my post, wild garlic can be eaten raw or cooked. All parts of the plant are edible. They are milder than garlic cloves. You can add them to soups, make risotto, eat them raw, sautée them or make an aromatic pesto. Be creative. But go easy with the amount you eat, as it can create a little bit of havoc with your digestion.

The puff pastry I used and the wild garlic pesto.
Mix the pesto with and spread it on the pastry...
...if you prefer not to have ricotta spread the pesto directly on the pastry.
My wild garlic pesto with ricotta rolls
Wild garlic and ricotta roll

Depending on the size of the puff pastry you buy you may not need to use the whole amount of the filling. Too much filling can make the roll too rich and wet. You can also use the recipe below to mix into warm pasta, like a pesto sauce.

Ingredients

1 puff pastry sheet, thawed (I use organic Dorset Pastry)

For the filling

100g wild garlic pesto (see recipe here)
50g organic ricotta
1 egg, beaten 

Parmesan cheese, grated (optional)

Method

Pre-heat the oven at 200°C.

Mix the ricotta and wild garlic pesto, season to taste.
Lightly flour the work surface and roll out the puff pastry dough and spread the ricotta mix on the dough. Roll up the puff pastry and close the edge. Rest the dough in the refrigerator for 10 minutes.
Slice the roll in approx. 2.5cm pieces. If you want you can sprinkle some parmesan cheese on top.
Place them on a baking sheet, brush the sides and top with the beaten egg, and bake in the oven for 10 to 15 minutes. Turn the heat down to 150C and bake for 5 more minutes - or until they are golden, dry and crispy.

Let them cool off a bit and enjoy!

A healthy note: Wild Garlic (Allium ursinum): also known as Ramsons or Bear’s garlic. Wild garlic has similar healing properties to the cultivated garlic. It is very good for your digestive system, immune system and the cardiovascular system. It helps to control blood pressure and blood cholesterol levels (it helps to reduce blood stickyness). Wild garlic has antibacterial, antifungal and antioxidant properties. It also prevents colds and flus. Wild garlic is known to ease stomach pain and acts as a digestive tonic.

Till next week!
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