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Applegate garlic is large with multiple layers of even-sized cloves, numbering around 12 to 18 per bulb. Each clove has a tightly-wrapped papery covering that is light yellow to white with some purple-hued patches. The cloves are off-white and have a mild, creamy flavor without the hot, pungent finish of other garlic varieties.
Applegate garlic is available year-round.
Applegate garlic, botanically classified as Allium sativum, is an heirloom, softneck that is further classified into the artichoke variety. This variety of garlic is one of the most common commercially grown types because of its large size and ease of growth. Artichoke-type garlic gets its name from its appearance, which resembles the many-layered leaves of artichokes and these are the varieties most commonly found in grocery stores. Applegate garlic is an early-season variety and is typically available prior to other cultivars.
Applegate garlic is an excellent source of vitamins A, B and C and also contains essential amino acids and minerals like calcium, iron, potassium, zinc, copper, and magnesium
Applegate garlic is best suited for raw applications such as crushing or slicing to combine into pesto and other raw sauces. When used raw, it is mild enough to be added to tuna or chicken salads and chutneys because the flavor will not overpower the dish. Applegate garlic is also well-suited for roasting and offers a very delicate flavor when cooked. The tightly wrapped cloves allow for longer storage time, and these bulbs can be stored in a cool, dry place for up to 9 months.
Though garlic has been cultivated for thousands of years, it wasn't considered domesticated until scientists could establish a process of selective breeding from wild specimens. The United States Department of Agriculture was able to send a team into Central Asia to study the wild species found in the area. The "center of origin" for garlic is believed to be an area in Central Asia that is now modern-day Uzbekistan, Turkmenistan, and Kazakhstan. It wasn't until after this study that garlic was officially considered a domesticated crop.
The exact history and origin of garlic is largely unknown because of its ancient roots. Applegate garlic is believed to have descended from the Rocambole group of hardneck garlic that was brought to North America via European immigrants in the 20th century. Today, Applegate garlic is most often found at local farmer's markets in North America.