Garlic, due to how easy it is to cure it for storage, is an internationally tradeable commodity – but if you’re eating locally and seasonally, garlic is a rare example of a crop that can be used at pretty much all stages of its seasonal life cycle. I’m always excited when new garlic comes in spring – in winter, cured garlic starts to send out shoots, which is great because you can then grow new garlic with it, but bad because you can’t eat garlic you’ve planted in the ground. This week we have fresh garlic from Bream Creek Community Market Garden that has been harvested before the cloves have formed in the bulb, and before the scapes (seed heads) have shot up through the middle. Sadly, the community-run farmlet has found a disease in their crop – not a disease that makes the garlic bad to eat, but a disease regardless that means that much of the crop would go to waste if they left it to grow to maturity, and also a disease that means the cloves can’t be replanted. Every bit of the garlic in your box this week is edible – it won’t go through a garlic crusher (which is Satan’s invention anyway…), but chopped up it’ll yield two or three meals worth of delicious garlic flavour.
Leafy greens (like the lovely butterleaf lettuce from Grown for Taste and baby spinach from Dendra Market Gardens), new potatoes and asparagus are all emblematic of spring, but this week we’ve got something even more exciting – the first strawberries of the season! Strawberries start much earlier than other berries (raspberries, blueberries, etc) and continue for much later – and this year is I’m pretty sure the earliest we’ve been able to get our hands on some of David Jennings delicious Cygnet-grown strawberries! Expect these in your box pretty much every week from now until Christmas.