How To Use Stiffneck Garlic In Daily Cooking
Using stiffneck garlic for healthy cooking is advantageous for several reasons. Consuming garlic as such has got several health benefits and the stiffneck variety otherwise known as the hardneck variety can be consumed in more ways than the softneck one which is rather strong smelling.
Here are a few prominent differences between the softneck and stiffneck varieties of this strong smelling vegetable.
Shape and form: Stiffneck garlic has fewer cloves than the softneck garlic, as few as four or five. These few cloves are formed about a central stalk which is hard and gives the variety its name. This stalk is called the scape and can be used in cooking as well. Softneck has no scape.
Skin: Softneck garlic has got many more layers and thinner wisps of skin. The hardneck variety on the other hand has fewer layers and is hence very easy to peel. This aspect also proves disadvantageous as the fewer layers of skin reduce the shelf life of the pod.
Flavor: Hardneck garlic has a milder flavor which makes it easier to use in sauces and pastes as a generous dollop will not produce an overwhelming taste.
The differences above make it clear why the softneck variety is more commonly available. It keeps longer, has a strong flavor and a single pod has more cloves making it generally more commercially suitable and that’s the reason why you find softneck garlic in supermarket aisles and you need to procure hardneck garlic from the organic farm.
Here are a few recipes you could make using hardneck garlic.
Roasted garlic: Peel cloves of the garlic and place 4-5 in some aluminium foil with some olive oil and bake at 400F for about 40mins. Slightly open the foil and let it brown for about 5-10 mins. You will have smooth paste that can be spread. And it doesn’t have as strong a smell as softneck garlic.
Pickled scapes: Place some curry powder and other herbs of your choice (oregano and basil work well) in pickling jars. Boil water, vinegar and salt. Pack scapes tightly in the jars and while standing in the canner, pour the hot brine over the scapes. Process and can. Use after two weeks.
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