Italian Purple Garlic
Inventory, lb : 0
Italian Purple garlic is harvested in the summer months.
Italian Purple garlic, Allium Sativum var. ophioscorodon, is one of dozens of Italian garlic varieties and originally was classified as a member of the Lily (Liliaceae) family, today it has been reclassified as part of the Alliaceae family and is a relative of onions. Garlic is the common name dedicated to hundreds of varieties which can be classified as hardneck and softneck types. Italian Purple garlic is an heirloom rocambole hardneck garlic. Rocambole garlics are considered a special but rare class of garlics. Rocabole garlics develop a single row of cloves around a central hard stalk. They are hard to grow outside of areas that do not experience true cold winters, they are particular about their growing conditions and once harvested, they have a very short shelf-life, which is uncommon for most garlic.
Italian Purple garlic can easily be distinguished from other garlics by its appearance. Its solid bulb is almost uniformly rounded and its thick layers of wrappers are streaked with variegations of violet purple, white and brown. The bulb contains a thick central scape surrounded by about four to fourteen plump cream colored cloves in relatively easy-to-peel skin. The cloves are aromatic, spicy, rich and bold in flavor, which only increases with maturity. When eaten raw, a little bit goes a long way with Italian Purple garlic as its flavor lingers on the palate for quite a while.
Like many varieties of garlic, Italian Purple garlic is rich in allicin, the enzyme responsible not only for garlic’s well-known aroma and flavor but for a slew of health benefits as well. Italian Purple garlic is believed to help promote healthy blood pressure levels, ward off certain cancers and has antibiotic and anti-inflammatory properties.
When garlic cloves are cut or crushed sulfur compounds and an enzyme known as alliinsae in its cell walls mix resulting in garlic’s trademark aroma and flavor. Crushing, finely chopping, pressing or pureeing garlic releases more of its essential oils and provides a sharper, more assertive flavor than slicing or leaving it whole. Italian Purple garlic can be used in any recipe that calls for conventional garlic. Add to oils and butter to infuse with a garlic flavor for cooking vegetables, seafood or meats. Roasting cloves whole will draw out garlics sweetness and impart a deeper flavor. Its strong flavor pairs well with chiles, tomatoes, onion, cream, olive oil, soy sauce, citrus, starchy pastas, grilled steak, roasted meats and seafood. To store keep Purple Italian garlic in a cool dry place and use within one to three months or before garlic begins to sprout.
In ancient times garlic was viewed by many cultures to be a food for the lower classes, a stigma that arose from the pungent aroma garlic left on one’s breath post consumption. In 2006 in Rome there was a debate over garlic's aromatic ramifications and the increased use of garlic in Italy’s modern culinary scene. In response a campaign was actually started by a group of local restaurants and political figures in attempts to rid garlic from the Italian dining table. The campaign was not surprisingly met by much objection from garlic fans in Italy and was unsuccessful.
It is believed Italian Purple garlic was first brought to the United States from northern Italy in the early 20th century. It has since been grown throughout many garlic growing regions in the northern and western United States. Like many rocamboles it thrives in regions that experience cold winters. It is still considered a rare garlic with very limited commercial production. Italian Purple garlic finds its primary culinary relevance appropriately in Italy.
Recipes that include Italian Purple Garlic. One is easiest, three is harder.
|Just a Taste||Roasted Garlic Macaroni and Cheese|
|Gimme Some Oven||44-Clove Garlic (and Chicken) Soup|
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PCC Natural Markets
PCC Natural Markets - FremontNear Seattle, Washington, United States
600 N 34th St, Seattle 98103
About 330 days ago, 5/30/16
Spotter's comments : Italian Purple Garlic spotted at PCC Natural Markets. A favored healthy herb of all cuisines - Excellent roasted with mashed potatoes ;)
farm near Deruta, Italy Near Spello, Umbria, Italy
About 570 days ago, 10/03/15