24 April 2014

English wild garlic pesto

This week I've been applying Italian principles to life in England. Principally, foraging for food. The woods in the West Country are full of wild garlic (ramsons, stinking Jenny, devil's garlic, allium ursinum). We walked past masses of it on an Easter walk. So I picked some leaves (it's the leaves you use, not the bulbs) and had a go at a couple of recipes.

Bluebells and wild garlic in the woods
First I used a few chopped leaves in a leek, wild garlic and Cheddar frittata (a version of this Riverford recipe). That worked well - a nice flavour, fairly subtle.

Next I tried a very English version of pesto. Wild garlic leaves and walnuts whizzed in a food processor, with olive oil (the only imported ingredient) and Twineham Grange vegetarian hard cheese stirred in. The pesto tasted pretty fiery during the preparation process, but once mixed into pasta the flavour is milder and very good. So now my fridge and freezer contain stores of an Italian-style English pesto.
Spaghetti with wild garlic pesto

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