Wild Garlic

Description

Wild garlic is typical of the Apače Valley. One can find it in early spring in forests along the Mura River and it has a distinctive scent. Fresh, bright green fragrant leaves colour the forest ground, when the trees are still without leaves after the long, cold winter. Since our forests are full of wild garlic, our municipality has become famous for it. Due to the beautiful countryside in which it is found, it is a true natural tourist magnet. From March to May we can collect it along the walking and cycling routes of the Apače Valley. It is especially beautiful when it blooms with white flowers in April and brightens the green cover of the forest floor. In addition to being healthy, in restaurants in Apače they use it for many culinary delights. One of those dishes is a creamy soup with wild garlic. It is also used for various spreads and salads. It can be a seasoning for cottage cheese, cream, ground sunflower seeds or pumpkin seeds, olive and pumpkinseed oil, potatoes and much more. There are many recipes and, with a little imagination, you can use it practically anywhere because it has the characteristics of plain garlic and is an excellent addition to dishes. It can be preserved for a long time, if you put it in olive oil while still fresh, or you can simply store it in the freezer, or just dry it and then crush it. It is important to warn visitors that wild garlic is very similar to two highly poisonous plants: lily of the valley and crocus. They do not have that distinctive garlic scent, so it is very important to be extremely careful when gathering wild garlic. A few other interesting facts about wild garlic: it was used by the Romans, they preferred wild garlic to regular garlic as it has more healing properties so was used as a remedy for various illnesses and problems. It is edible in its entirety, one can use the leaves, bulb, flowers and fruits, but not too much at once. Wild garlic is very healthy and some even claim that bears use it when they wake up from hibernation, to clean their stomach, bowels and blood.