Piquant, pungent and ever so slightly sweet; the small bulbs of wild garlic are deliciously delicate. 

wildgarlicToday’s flavor comes straight from the forest floor, nestled among the first bluebells of spring. The aroma of garlic fills the dell as the sun pokes through the budded branches and warms their palm like leaves. Wild garlic, also known as ramson, is different from the typical conventional garlic we can find in the store. It is slightly sweeter, with a light flavor and the leaves and stems are edible as well.  Today’s garlic was foraged to accompany a slow baked, locally sourced chicken and wild nettle soup (foraged carefully with the garlic and some dandelion). 

From a health perspective wild garlic has all the amazing qualities of typical garlic with the added benefit of fresh forest air and a lovely walk in the woods. Garlic is antifungal, antibacterial, and antimicrobial. Research also demonstrates that garlic is highly beneficial in lowering blood pressure and reducing the risk of cardiovascular disease. Garlic is also an immune booster and is excellent for fighting flus and viruses. Wild garlic is beneficial for healthy digestion and helps stimulate production of health flora and fauna in the gut while eliminating the baddies, including parasites.

Research suggests that garlic is also useful in preventing a variety of cancers and aids in decreasing oxidative stress as well as systemic inflammation. Wandering the woods for wild garlic is a bonus and a definite treat, if you don’t have woods near you, it could be worth checking at your local farmer’s market or asking your natural food grocer if they can get their hands on it for you. You won’t be sorry. (unless of course you’ve accidentally picked lily of the valley, which is quite toxic...doh!)