I had been anticipating a great number and great variety of entries for this month's Weekend Wokking. Garlic is such a wondrous herb; good for both digestion and the blood, it has the added benefit of being a natural vampire repellent (and judging from popular culture, vampires are on the increase). It is also virtually universal to all cuisines. Each cuisine has an affinity for this cousin to the onion and finds a way to incorporate it in popular dishes.
The variety and excellence of the submissions did not disappoint. We are able to assemble a multi-course meal of garlic dishes, from soup to sides to main courses. Starting with a delicious chilled soup from Sweatha, we end with a tasty dish of fried rice from Weekend Wokking's creator, Wandering Chopsticks. In between we have some Korean kimchi, a hearty beef stew, some Chinese pork in a luscious garlic sauce, and a spring tart with asparagus. Each dish celebrates garlic in its own way. Together, they show why garlic is such an esteemed element in so many dishes the world over.
Our first entry is from Sweatha of TastyCurryLeaf, who coincidentally will be hosting next month's roundup. She made a refreshing Chilled Garlic Soup with 17 cloves of garlic. She worried the garlic might be overpowering, but found it to be understated when she first tasted the soup. You can read all about it here.
Next comes some Baechu Kimchi from Christine at Kits Chow. Chilies, garlic, ginger and cabbage--what's not to love? Christine's detailed instructions on how to make your own supply of this garlicky kimchi can be found here.
EJL of Made with Optimism made a hearty Winter Beef Stew. This would have been welcomed last week in northern California when we were suffering an unseasonably cold and wet week for spring break. The full write up is here.
TS and JS of (eatingclub)Vancouver made White Pork with Garlic Sauce, Two Ways (蒜泥白肉), a pork dish that features a luscious garlic sauce. As the lotus rises from and flowers out of mud, so the essenge of garlic blossoms from the "mud garlic" of this sauce. Their interesting account of the discovery of the secret to this dish is here.
I had originally intended to post a more assertively flavored garlic recipe, but I couldn't pass on the spring garlic and asparagus at the farmers' market. My post on an Asparagus and Spring Garlic Tart is here.
Finishing up, we have Garlic Fried Rice With Eggs from Wandering Chopsticks. This is another of those dishes that simply celebrates the zing that garlic can impart. Fried rice is a dish that can go in so many directions depending on what the cook wants to do with it. For a complete account of this garlic fried rice as well as links to other variations, go here.
Thanks to everyone who participated in this month's Weekend Wokking. It was a real pleasure to host this event. I probably would have never started a blog if it weren't for Wandering Chopsticks' helpful primer on starting a blog, so it was nice to be able to host this almost a year to the day after my first post.
The ingredient for May's Weekend Wokking is tofu.
Sweatha, of TastyCurryLeaf will be hosting the roundup on Wednesday, May 5th. Please send entries by 11:59 p.m., Sunday, May 2 to: tastycurryleaf @gmail.com .