Taste of the week: Garlic Heirloom @ Wee Bee Farms


Garlic is just garlic, right? If you’ve tasted one garlic, you’ve tasted them all.

“First, the average garlic you buy in most supermarkets is most likely grown in China, selected for its shelf life. It’s been stored for nine months to a year, so it tastes much more bitter, ”says Susan Beeman, a farmer who has sold garlic for 25 years at Boulder Farmers Market. She grows about 30 varieties of garlic per year in her Wee Bee Farms in Hygiene. The bulbs are dried and cured for about a month before they are sold, explains Beeman.

“Fresh garlic is like a whole other vegetable. It’s juicy, it’s much better when it’s fresher. Lots of varieties that you can eat raw. They are full of flavor but less intense. I slice raw cloves very thinly on crackers, ”she says.

Beeman always loved garlic growing up – “Mum made spaghetti and meatballs” – but she didn’t start to be Boulder’s “Garlic Queen” until a friend from Oregon sent him six different kinds to plant on his then new farm. . “I got hooked. They are all so special and unique with different colors, shapes, sizes and flavors, ”she says.

Beeman illustrates with four varieties that she grows and sells:

Chesnok: “It’s the most popular variety because it’s the best for stir-fries. It has bite and retains flavor throughout cooking. It’s good for roasted garlic and pickling.

German Extra Hardy: “This is my favorite. You can put it raw in guacamole, pesto or hummus without it burning your mouth. It will lose its flavor if it is cooked for too long.

Korean Red Hot (Asian Tempest): “An intensely flavored garlic that’s good for roasting, making kimchi, and quick stir-fries.

Inchelium Red: “This variety was discovered on the Colville Indian Reservation in Washington. It is the sweetest, sweetest garlic I grow. You can eat it raw in a salad.

Beeman likes to compare garlic to wine. “The first time you taste wine, it’s like, ‘Oh, wine,’ but after a while you see that there is a difference between red wine and white wine. Then you start to see a difference between the different types of red wine, ”she says.

Some strains are highly regarded for their health benefits, as they are very high in allicin, an antimicrobial component that inhibits bacteria and has been used as a treatment for lung disease for several millennia.

Beeman’s says her last Boulder Farmers’ Market of the year will likely be Oct. 9, when she expects to run out of this year’s garlic crop for cooking and planting.

PS – Don’t use that questionable bottled minced garlic. Buy a cheap garlic press and use it to make fresh garlic butter etc.

Culinary calendar

Postcard image of sliced ​​pies during Pumpkin Pie Days in Longmont in the early 1900s. Photo: Société historique de Saint-Vrain

In the early 1900s, the people of Longmont baked over 5,000 pumpkin pies to serve visitors during the annual Pumpkin Pie Days. While those pie treats are gone, pumpkin pie is still on the menu at the 51st Annual Pumpkin Pie Days Vintage & Antique Market, October 9-10 at Boulder County Fairgrounds. Profits will be donated to the Société historique de Saint-Vrain de Longmont. . . Longmont Restaurant Week, October 8-17, has meal deals for $ 18.71 and $ 28.71 at Blue Corn Tacos, Outworld Brewing, Longmont Public House, and other restaurants. Menus: longmontrestaurantweek.com.

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