Farmer’s Market Finds Part III: Green Garlic

May 24, 2008

As you are reading this, chances are that I’m in a airplane, making a beeline out over the Atlantic and straight toward Bermuda. As in Bahama, Come on Pretty Mama. And I could not be more thrilled. After a week of post-graduation nothing, I could really use a vacation. But, don’t you worry. As I spent yesterday gathering passports, packing and daydreaming about pastel colored buildings, pink sand beaches and Bermuda fish chowder, I also tied up some loose ends with this site. For instance, I couldn’t let the first Farmer’s Market Finds series of aught eight (after Part I and Part II) languish until we return next week. Because I’m sure you’re dying to learn just what we did with our green garlic and rhubarb. Well, good news: green garlic is coming your way today and the rhubarb will be quick on its heels.

(Click “more” for the rest of the story, more photos & the recipe.)

I actually used my bundle of green garlic stalks in several ways: diced up in a saute—a melange, if you will—of fat zucchini and yellow squash half moons (where it made a ho-hum bowl of veggies taste like something special); whizzed up in a punchy garlic-chive pesto (where it was mellower than traditional garlicky pestos, which can sometimes make my eyes water just a little bit); and, as you see it here, pureed into a lush spread of lemon-scented white beans. In all three uses, the green garlic had this in common: it asserted itself, without becoming overwhelming. The only problem is that I’m all out of green garlic and I now have yet another green garlic recipe I can’t wait to make, thanks to a recent commenter. But additional green-garlic-hunting will just have to wait until we are back from Bermuda!

About that vacation: comment responses and moderation might be a little slow until we return, next Wednesday. In the meantime, whip up a batch of this dip; I think it’d make a great light starter for your Memorial Day BBQ.

White Bean-Green Garlic Dip

2 tablespoons plus 2 teaspoons extra-virgin olive oil, divided
1 stalk green garlic, trimmed and minced (white and light green parts only
1 small onion, diced
1 (15 ounce) can cannellini, drained and rinsed
2 tablespoons lemon juice, divided
1/4 teaspoon smoked paprika
zest of one lemon

In a medium skillet, heat 2 teaspoons of olive oil over medium heat. Add the green garlic and onion and saute for several minutes, until slightly softened. Add the white beans and one tablespoon of lemon juice and cook for one minute, stirring. Add the smoked paprika and lemon zest and cook for 30 seconds, stirring. Transfer the white bean mixture and the remaining 1 tablespoons of lemon juice to a food processor and pulse the mixture into a coarse paste. While the processor is running, stream in the olive oil until you achieve a smooth consistency.

Serve warm or cool with crackers, pita or crudite.

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