There was nearly culinary disaster here at the end of the week, as there was no garlic to be had. Which given how often we use it was a big oversight. So when I saw a tweet from The Garlic Farm about now being the time to start planting Spring softnecks, it made me wonder if maybe this should be an addition to the herb bed.
I have no idea what a spring softneck is, but I guess it’s just less dry than the hardneck stuff. If you have a look on their site then there are 11 different types of garlic to choose from. I’m quite tempted to try some wild garlic, so that would have the garlic and the leaves, and then maybe some Lautrec Wight. And as there’s a parcel to be delivered, then I’d be tempted to order some smoked garlic for cooking with now.
I’ve never tried a garlic chive, but wondering if that’s a great multi-tasking plant to have as well. As it’s part of the allium family, it also has pretty flowers, and apparently the bees and butterflies love it too. Sounds like a bit a of a win all round.
Perhaps another answer is to have some garlic oil on standby. If I’d been organised, then I guess I could have infused my own, but I wasn’t! If you want to keep it British then I would try the Garlic Rapeseed Oil from Stainswick Farm. This is extra virgin, cold pressed and apparently not subtle, so go easy on how you use it! I would probably also top up the oil cupboard by adding in a bottle each of the Lemon Oil and the Smoked Rapeseed as well. After all, warm salads are high on my list of must make dishes this season, so lots of dressings needed!
I know growing my own is not the quickest answer, but would end up being the freshest, one day! I’ll let you know how I get on.
Fabulous garlic mosaic by Robyn Jay on Flickr.