#VeganMoFo Day 27: Favorite herb or spice? Garlic!

It’s almost too obvious, but where would we be without garlic? What else is so versatile, so universal, so DELICIOUS? There are so many ways to use it.

You can use it roasted or grilled, where each clove slips out of its husk with little effort and tastes sweet and smoky as it does pungent.

Or have it raw and minced to punch up your dressing. It’s in my go-to tahini sauce, and usually thrown into the blender when making a fresh herb-based dressing.

Crispy and fried in an Asian soup or salad (Burmese tea leaf salad? Vietnamese pho?), often with its BFF, shallots.

Young “green” garlic and garlic scapes let you use the whole plant and offer a different texture and milder flavor. Something to look forward to every spring.

Not to mention myriad other ways, just crushing, chopping, or slicing the cloves and cooking with vegetables or adding to sauces and soups.

When I run out of garlic, I panic.  My favorite is a hard-necked variety with purple skin that comes off its large cloves super easy. It’s not always available in the market, but I stock up when I find it. I love hearing people at the farmers’ market ask what to do with X vegetable and being told, almost invariably, “Well, I saute it with some garlic…”

There are very few things garlic cannot improve. (Chocolate is one. Berries are another. Otherwise…)

Nearly every other spice or herb I could name that I love is made even better by garlic. Parsley? Yeah. Cilantro? Duh. (Parsley AND cilantro with garlic? Mmmmm.) Basil? Hello, pesto. Cumin and coriander? Add ginger and garlic and you’ve got a curry. Red pepper flakes? Critical.

Garlic: can’t live without it. End of story.

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