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garlic

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mushroom-fava-beans

Braised mushrooms and fava beans with spring garlic and scallions

There’s something invigorating about visiting the market on one of the earliest days of spring. I don’t mean spring in the true calendar sense, as sticklers will point out that officially we have a week or two of winter left. And I also don’t mean it purely in terms of …

cabbage-salad

Garlicky roasted cabbage salad

There’s something enticing about the refrigerator case in even the simplest neighborhood grocery stores around here — salad after colorful salad, lined up on the shelf in clear plastic containers like so many jars of candy, ready to be taken to picnics or home for an easy meal. It’s appealing …

fennel-soup2

Spring soup with fava beans, fennel and leek

This soup says spring — delicate in flavor and appearance, with a lovely mix of the season’s latest offerings. With fresh fava beans, fennel and leek, their sweetness enhanced by fresh basil, this is a light soup for these days of intermittent rain and warmth.

pickled-garlic

Sweet pickled garlic

Did you know garlic has a season? Well, you do if you frequent the country’s markets, where massive stalks of purple-green garlic are out in all their glory. ‘Tis the season for garlic, the time to stock up for an entire year. China is the world’s largest garlic producer, with …

artichoke-ravioli-cafe-liz

Ravioli with Jerusalem artichoke and roasted garlic

It’s not really an artichoke, but we call it that anyway — Jerusalem artichoke, or sunchoke, is a root vegetable that happens to have an artichoke-like taste. It doesn’t have any real connection to Jerusalem, either, for that matter; it’s actually native to the United States. Despite its deceptively being …

eggplant in pomegranate balsamic vinegar

Eggplant in balsamic vinegar and pomegranate syrup

This soft eggplant dish has a tangy taste from the pomegranate and balsamic vinegar, while red onions add a bit of jewel-like color. You could toss some pomegranate seeds on top as well when they're in season. On a slightly related note, look at this weird eggplant we saw at …

stuffed-grape-leaves

Grape leaves stuffed with cranberries, garlic and rice

Now is the season to pick grape leaves. Not that I have access to a grapevine; but plenty of other people do, it seems. One of them apparently dumped a pile of fresh leaves next to the scales at some stall buried deep in the Carmel market this past weekend. …

roasted-pepper-salad

Roasted red pepper salad

This is a very simple roasted pepper recipe I learned while I was living in Madrid, from my landlady/host Sra. Pilar in her high-ceilinged apartment in the upscale neighborhood of Salamanca. That was quite possibly the most I’ve ever paid to rent a room, but I guess it was worth …

garlic-greens-spread-cafe-liz

Garlic greens paste with romano and walnuts

On the advice of friends, we are now the proud owners of eight massive heads of garlic, stems still attached. Apparently this is garlic season, so now is the time to stock up for the year. There are several reasons to do so, our friends told us — the garlic …

potato-salad

Garlicky potato salad

This recipe is inspired by the ali oli potato tapas they serve in Spain. I made this potato salad to bring to a party, and the real reason I chose this dish is that it’s completely homemade (and looks it), but takes only 10-15 minutes to make. I used about …