The wild garlic (German: Bärlauch, which translated means Bear’s leek) is another really special spring food and all Germans seem to be crazy about it and throw it into every dish imaginable – pasta, soups, risotto, pesto or just eat it raw in salads. It grows wild, mostly in South Germany and Austria as well as in the UK, which makes it easy to come by if you live near a forest, but pretty hard if you live in East London like me. So, I asked my boyfriend’s Mum to pick some in the woods near Henley for me so I could use them for our Sunday lunch.
If you live in London you can buy it from Turnips in Borough market (www.turnipsboroughmarket.com) – but be quick, its only in its lush green state from about March – End of May/beginning of June. If buying feels a bit like cheating and you want to forage it yourself, you can find great info about where and how on www.urbanforager.org.uk The whole plant is edible, but please just crop the leaves to make sure for it to grow back the next year!
I used my wild garlic for these super tasty little pastry treats. Normally I would have made mini strudel but these little parcels were better for my photos so you can see the filling – of course you can just fold them over like strudel too. These are great with the Rhubarb beet root soup or even just nice with a coffee and a few strawberries. (Even though most of you might find that a weird combo, but that’s my boyfriend for you.)
Wild garlic mini strudel (makes about 10):
Ca. 150-200g wild garlic leaves, washed and chopped
500ml creme fraiche
Some twigs of dill
Salt and pepper to season
300g pastry dough (Make your pastry dough fresh like described in my strudel recipe or cheat a little and ‘forage’ it in the chilled or frozen section in the supermarket ;-)).
The rest is easy peasy:
Wash and chop your wild garlic and mix with crème fraiche, dill and some vegetable salt and pepper. Roll out your dough in little batches of about 15×8 cm. Add your cream and herb mix in the middle and top-off with a few more wild garlic sprinkles.
Make sure the dough is almost paper-thin as you want it to bake super quick without drying out the filling.Then put your little creations into your oven on 220 °C until they are nicely golden brown. (took about 8 mins in my oven)
Tatataaaa- now enjoy your crispy creamy spring strudel!
PS: If you love the idea of foraging for more seasonal fruit, veg and herbs, then have a look at this great blog for year round tips: http://fergustheforager.co.uk/