Pumpkin Soup

a weblog with an allotment attached

17 July 2008

In a pickle

wheelbarrow garlic

I think I might have mentioned that we have had a bumper garlic harvest. 11.5kg. That’s a whole lot of stinkiness. In fairness, that is the weight of the garlic with all its leaves still attached, but still, it’s fair to say that we have ridiculous amounts of garlic and so it seems reasonable to me to weigh it along with the foliage in order to more accurately reflect the ludicrous quantity we have.

Garlic bulb

We’re big fans here of roasted wet garlic (or green garlic as it’s also known) so we’ve eaten some of it like that. Plus, a fair amount of it is now drying out and will be braided for keeping (and giving away to garlic-loving friends). But I’ve been particularly keen to try making some pickled garlic as this is one of my very favourite things to eat. I’ve not made it before and so I trawled around on t’internet and eventually came up with a number of recipes that I cobbled together into my very own version. Dangerous, perhaps. But where’s the fun if you don’t experiment in the kitchen? Here, then, in my usual rough and ready style, is the recipe…

  1. Take a lot of fresh garlic bulbs, enough to fill the bottom of a large pot. Scrub them, remove the roots and the very outer layer of skin. Cover with water and bring to the boil for 2 mins. Drain and leave to cool until you can bear to touch them.Garlic for pickling
  2. Squeeze the individual cloves from their skins. There is a knack to this and it’s a very fiddly, sticky process. It’s also dull and, I am informed, reeks of garlic (as you might expect). Put the cloves into a non-metallic container, cover with a saturated salt solution, seal and leave in the fridge. I also added some very thinly sliced fresh ginger at this stage.
  3. After 48 hours or so, drain the cloves and wash thoroughly. Put into hot, sterile jars, leaving about a centimetre of space at the top. Then, put a cup and a half of white wine vinegar and a cup of white wine into a saucepan and bring to the boil. You can add spices or herbs if you like – I used some mustard seeds in my first batch. Ladle the hot vinegar over the garlic in the jars. Again, you can add other interesting things now, perhaps a dried chilli or two. In my latest batch I added some very thinly sliced lemon peel.
  4. Seal the jars with hot lids. Put the jars into a water bath and boil for about 10 mins. Allow to cool – your jars should be properly sealed.

Hey presto!

Pickled garlic

And the verdict? Ah, well. The final step is to leave the jars in the fridge for at least three weeks before opening, so I’ve still got at least another week and a bit to go before I can sample the goodies.

At least that gives the neighbours some time to evacuate the area before it gets really smelly around here.

Filed under: Harvest,Mulch,Recipes - Non-soup — Clare @ 4:59 pm


4 responses

  1. chey

    It sounds as if it would be very tasty. The shot of the cloves pickling in the jars looks impressive.

    (17.07.08 @ 6:58 pm)

  2. Clare

    Hi Chey – thanks. I’ve certainly loved the pickled garlic I’ve had before so my fingers are crossed.

    (17.07.08 @ 8:23 pm)

  3. Amy

    Yum!! I’m planning to plant garlic this fall, for the first time.

    (17.07.08 @ 9:47 pm)

  4. earthwoman

    These look great. How do you use them – as simple pickles or can you cook with them?

    (18.07.08 @ 10:12 pm)

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