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5 Recipes to Get You Prepped for the Metro Vancouver Garlic Festival

The yearly celebration of the “stinking rose” is back—remember to pack some mints!

Danilo Ibarra, executive chef of American Grille, often jokes that a garlic clove a day will keep the doctor away. He’s been making garlicky treats at the Richmond Sharing Farm Society’s Garlic Festival for the last five years and will be returning this weekend for the ninth annual celebration of the “stinking rose” on Sunday, August 20, where festival goers can look forward to an artisans market, live musical performances, cooking demonstration and kids’ zone—plus the chance to feast on a variety of garlic-filled dishes (we hear the garlic ice cream is a must-try!).

Braided Italian Softneck garlic has a purple tint and mild flavour.

“I just love doing it because it’s for a good cause [all proceeds go towards the Sharing Farm Society, which supplies fresh produce to local food banks]—and you get to work with garlic,” says Ibarra, who’s already looking forward to sampling the variety—Russian Reds, mild (and braidable) purple Italian Softnecks, Music (a white-skinned garlic with large cloves and a pinkish tinge)—at the festival this year. “You find things you won’t find in Vancouver,” he adds. “Parsley roots, Russian garlic, German potatoes, and those kinds of beautiful produce.”

Between farm tours led by plants educator Bardia Khaledi, attendees can sample Ibarra’s prime rib sliders on garlic scapes, and choux pastry with roasted garlic aioli and blue cheese. Gordon Food Service chef Karen Barnaby will also be preparing a Laotian salad with spicy green beans and garlic chips. But if there’s one thing we all dread, it’s garlic breath. “They say you can eat raw apples, mint, lettuce, but you’re on a garlic farm,” Ibarra laughs. “You’re going to eat garlic and we’re all going to smell like garlic.”

In preparation for the culinary event, we’ve rounded up five of our favourite garlic recipes for you to try at home. Check them out and let us know which one is your fave by leaving a comment below!


1. Prosciutto Wrapped Garlic Scapes

Sydney Carlaw’s beautifully renovated Langley farm—and her fave recipes (Roasted garlic ice cream! Garlic parmesan fries!)—will be featured in our September 2017 issue, but until then, you can enjoy her prosciutto wrapped garlic scapes, along with other summer dishes from the WL Recipe Finder.


2. Planked Brie with Garlic-Onion Jam

What makes an ooey gooey mess? A melted cheese wheel topped with sauteéd onions, garlic and fresh thyme. This is the appetizer to serve at your next dinner party.


3. Basil and Garlic Scape Pesto

Julie Van Rosendaal shares her easy recipe for traditional basil pesto—with added garlic scapes for an extra bite. Far more inventive than creamy avocado, it’s perfect when spread on a piece of toast.


4. Romaine Salad with Smoked Tomato, Onion and Garlic Dressing

Roll out the barbecue and try this sweet romaine salad tossed with mesquite or hickory smoked tomatoes, onions and garlic.


5. Bloomsdale Spinach Salad with Black Garlic Vinaigrette

This isn’t your typical garden salad. Made with smoked mushrooms, almond ricotta, crispy shallots and a black garlic vinaigrette, it has a slightly tart flavour that pairs well with fresh spinach.


Metro Vancouver Garlic Festival

When: August 20, 2017 (10 a.m. to 3 p.m.)
Where: Terra Nova Rural Park, 2631 Westminster Highway
Tickets: $5 to eat and $3 to drink

For more information about upcoming events, subscribe to the WL newsletter!

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