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Garlic roots extend from all sides of the underground bulb's flat plate and can extend up to 30 centimeters in length. The roots are typically hairless and are white with tones of brown and black from the sand and dirt they are grown in. On average, most garlic bulbs will have between forty to sixty roots. Garlic roots hold less bite than the bulb and offer more of a subtle flavor with notes of pepper and a mellow sweet finish. Cooked garlic roots become even softer and develop a hint of nutty sweetness.
Garlic roots are available in the spring and summer months.
Garlic, botanically classified as Allium sativum, is a member of the lily family along with chives, shallots, and onions. Garlic roots are the taproots of an individual garlic bulb. These taproots descend from the bulbous root during garlic's growing cycle, establishing the plant and continuing to act as the plant's food seeker, absorbing nutrients from the soil. Garlic roots are an unusual culinary ingredient, primarily because they are usually trimmed from the bulb and discarded after harvest. They are considered an obscure secondary crop for garlic growers. Garlic roots are rarely available in conventional markets, but they can occasionally be found at farmers markets. Since it is not a commonly harvested item, many chefs, restaurants, and those interested in acquiring roots make requests with garlic growers for a special harvest of the roots.
Similar to the bulbs of the garlic plant, garlic roots contain allicin which has antibiotic and antifungal properties.
Garlic roots can be used in both raw and cooked applications. Comparable to the mild flavor of green garlic, they can be added to fresh salads or used as a garnish for guacamole and hummus. Garlic roots can also be combined with cooking oils for flavoring sautéed fish, chicken, potatoes, and fried eggs. They can also be fried or dehydrated to give a crunchy texture to the roots. Garlic roots can be used to impart flavor in soups, while also being added as a visual element to garlic soup itself. They can be added to pasta and legume dishes, tossed in as a finishing touch with noodles, cream, and cheese sauces or blanched fava beans. Pair garlic roots with fresh, spring vegetables such as asparagus, morels, green herbs, peas, leeks and fiddlehead ferns. Garlic roots will keep up to two weeks when wrapped in a paper towel in a sealed container and stored in the refrigerator.
Garlic has been used for centuries in traditional medicine all around the world including European, Chinese, and Ayurvedic medicine. Garlic was used to help treat worms, viruses, and was crushed and made into an ointment to be used topically in the treatment of fungal and bacterial infections as well as in the treatment of wasp and bee stings.
Garlic roots are not new to the horticultural landscape and have existed since the discovery of garlic in the Caucasus Mountains between the Black Sea and the Caspian Sea in central Asia. Garlic roots are difficult to find but can be found at select farmers markets in Asia, Europe, and the United States.
Recipes that include Garlic Roots. One is easiest, three is harder.
|About Food||Dehydrated Green Garlic Roots|
|So Savoureaux||Eggs and Garlic Roots|