This weekend I had the opportunity to head over to the 29th annual Gilroy Garlic Festival for the first time. Although I've lived close enough to attend, I had never made it there before. However when faced with promises of "food laced with over two tons of fresh garlic," I knew I had to attend.
The overall vibe was like most county fairs - loud music, dusty makeshift stalls, funny shaped drink goblets, booths full of cute knick-knacks, etc. - however, unlike other county fairs, this one bombarded you with the potent smell of garlic. Everywhere you turned it was garlic, garlic, garlic - there were garlic fries, garlic bread, garlic chicken, garlic sausage and even garlic ice cream, shaved ice and chocolate! And maybe I'm crazy, but the food just wasn't garlicky enough. Also I was hoping to see garlic funnel cakes, garlic donuts, or garlic waffles, but no such luck. I did however, stumble upon some really fantastic pickled garlic. The sweet, salty and spicy combo pairs really well with the crunchy fresh garlic. You can purchase an 8 oz. jar for $5.98 or if you prefer, you can make your own!
My mom recently perfected her recipe, to check it out,
From YumSugar's Mom
Note: My mom doesn't believe in recipes or real measurements, so this has been approximated.
8 oz jar clean and sterilized
enough fresh peeled garlic cloves to fill the jar
1 cup white vinegar
3/4 cup sugar
5 dried hot chili peppers (optional)
A few slices of licorice root
- Fill jar with garlic.
- In a saucepan over medium heat combine white vinegar and sugar. Place hot peppers, and licorice root (or seasonings of your choice, such as dill, etc.). Bring to boil for 2 minutes. When sugar is fully dissolved, remove from heat and allow to cool.
- When cool, pour mixture over garlic in jar (making sure the peppers and roots go into the jar), seal jar and store in a cool place.
- After 2-3 days move to refrigerator.
Notes: Licorice root is my mom's secret ingredient, it really reacts nicely, however it's hard to find - if you can't find it just omit. My mom also says that she never boils her ingredients, she just mixes in a bowl. She also recommends that you sweeten to taste. And finally, she suggests Heinz white vinegar as there's, "no need to buy the fancy stuff."