Green Garlic Puree

2 stalks green garlic

2 cups olive oil

1 teaspoon salt

juice of half a lemon

Bring a large pot of water to a boil and salt generously. Slice the green garlic in half lengthwise, then cut into three-inch strips. Blanch in boiling water and after three minutes strain through a colander and rinse under cold water to cool down. Place green garlic in a blender and add oil, salt, lemon juice and two tablespoons water. Puree until smooth and bright green. Taste for salt and lemon, adding more if desired. Use this puree as a base for a vinaigrette, pour it over grilled bread as an appetizer or finish a grilled fish or meat with it.

Grilled Green Garlic with Asparagus and Mint

2 stalks green garlic

8 spears asparagus, woody bases trimmed off

2 tablespoons olive oil

½ cup fresh mint, chopped

juice of half a lemon

salt

pepper

Preheat a grill very hot using charcoal or propane. Slice green garlic lengthwise in half and rinse. Season asparagus with olive oil, salt and pepper and keep separate, but mix separately in their own bowls. Place garlic on grill, cut side down and turn grill down to low. Cook for two minutes, then add asparagus to the grill. Keep an eye on both making sure they don’t burn, and turn over as necessary to get even color. Should take about six to eight more minutes to get desired char on both. Remove from grill and return each to their marinade bowls, toss again to coat with leftover oil squeezing lemon over both. Check for salt and pepper again, and season as necessary. For each plate, make a nest of green garlic on the center of each plate, giving equal portions of asparagus over and sprinkle fresh mint over the top to serve.