Our annual homage to one of our favourite ingredients. Ramsons, wood garlic, wild garlic; call it what you will, Allium ursinum is a forager’s delight and one of the best natural ingredients around at this time of year. It’s hard to pin down it’s exact season, but the plant is often to be found in abundance around damp woodlands from around mid March until the end of May. Unlike the usual variety of garlic, the wild stuff is prized for it’s leaves rather than it’s bulb. It’s flowers are also edible, but are more often used raw in salads(or delicious if pickled!). It’s distinctive and herbaceous aroma is somewhere between a scallion and normal garlic, and this subtlety makes it incredibly versatile.
Be careful when foraging yourself – it looks a bit like the poisonous ‘Lily of the Valley’ plant. For positively identifying wild garlic, a quick grind of the leaves between the fingers should reveal a garlic like smell.
We’ll be starting our weekend on the Thursday with a ‘Spring Flavours’ (part 3) cookery demo. We’ll be covering some recipes featuring Wild Garlic , but also celebrating some other great seasonal ingredients such as Sprouting Brocolli, Spring Cabbage, Rhubarb and a shoulder of local lamb. The evening includes all notes, a light supper and a glass of wine and tickets are priced at €35. If you’d like to come, please call our delicatessen on 094 9286072.
Our Café menus will be also feature plenty of Garlic with delicious specials at our Friday night supper in New Antrim Street (Book on 094 9023376) as well as dishes like Friendly Farmer Chicken Kievs, Andarl Pork with Wild Garlic stuffing, Fishcakes with poached eggs and wild Garlic hollandaise and our own hot Dog – the ‘Madra Rua’, with local champion sausage maker Sean De Burca’s Wild Garlic bangers! Our shop will also be stocking wild garlic flavoured breads, soups, pestos, tarts and mayo to take home.
Here’s a recipe from our forthcoming cookery demo…
Wild Garlic Soda Bread
450 g plain white flour
1 level teaspoon of salt AND bread soda, sieved into flour
400 ml buttermilk
Handful of wild garlic leaves
Sieve all dry ingredients in to bowl.
Lightly blitz the wild garlic into the butter milk, and add to the dry ingredients.
Use your hand to lightly mix the ingredients until they just come together, and spill out on to floured counter.
Shape into one ball or several small ones for savoury scones, and put onto a lightly floured baking sheet.
Put into hot 220 degree oven for 10 minutes and then down to 190 for approx. 30 mins.
Have a slightly warm slice generously coated with some Cuinneog butter.