21 September 2007

Gilroy Garlic Festival Dip...Now That's Stinkin!!

Lake Kalamalka
Today is my daughters birthday. She is 5 hours away "over the mountains and through the woods" at university. This will be the first birthday I have ever missed!!! For all you moms and dads out there can you imagine!!!! Don't feel sorry for us, or, cry me a river of tears though, we celebrated her birthday twice already last month with dinners and presents!! We celebrated but just at a different time!!! It is rather sad though. Birthdays were always such a big deal in our home. Every year we would come up with a party theme. I'd bake elaborate cakes with individual hula dancers in grass icing skirts or fancy ballgowns carrying little umbrellas. I made swimming pool cakes with little girls swimming, school bus cakes.... I was brilliant if not overly talented. When my daughter was 7 I discovered she didn't like icing on cakes (I know!!!!), so, from then on it was unicorn or pizza ice cream cakes.

We made pinatas that you had to beat over the head with a baseball bat (repeatedly) to get them to crack open so that the kids could take home their goodie bags. We toilet papered ourselves like mummies, made fancy tea party hats...the ideas were endless!!!

Then boys came into the mix... and well...the whole "little girl" parties I loved to plan for weeks went to...(you know). It was Boston Pizza from then on, movies and beach parties. Now my once little girl is in the big city having a wonderful time on her birthday I am sure; new friends and old friends. These university days will be something she will have with her forever!

I seem to have a garlic theme going on here. Perhaps that is due to the fact that colder weather is just around the corner. Garlic has medicinal values, so, eat plenty of garlic. This dip is something I will serve on my daughter's birthday (although she is not here). I am going walking and then my friends are back here for a few margaritas or a nice glass of wine.I will meet up with my daughter by telephone.

Gilroy is in California where they have been holding the Garlic Festival for 23 years. It is touted as one of the world's best food festivals where a portion of their money goes to local charities and Gilroy Chamber of Commerce is ecstatic with all the tourism dollars. To enter the recipe contest you have to have a minimum of 6 cloves of garlic in your dish!!!!!

Garlic is member of the lily family, along with onions, chives, shallots and leeks. In ancient times garlic was thought to have mystical powers, more than likely due to it's potent flavour and aroma than anything else. We have all heard the stories of placing garlic bulbs around a window, or wearing garlic around your neck or rubbing it on doorknobs to ward off vampires and other evil spirits. I think this works...there have been no reported vampire sightings in years at least here in British Columbia!!

Nelson, British Columbia has their own Garlic Festival during the summer. I heard of it through one of our patients. They even have a restaurant called the "Outer Clove" that makes all garlic dishes. I tried to find out more about it on line but their web site is still in the baby stages. A few years back in Everett, near Seattle, Wahington we went to an Italian restaurant where I had all garlic dishes for their festival. For dessert I had something kind of like a Reese's Peanut Butter cup but the filling was made with garlic. Garlic is sweet when baked so I can see that. Believe me when I tell you it was delicious!!!!!! I have been searching for a recipe ever since. So, if anyone can help me with that I'd be delirious with happiness!!!

The photo is taken at Jade Bay in Vernon, British Columbia. That's my beach over there that you see in the distance.

**Gilroy Garlic Festival Dip**

8-oz cream cheese, room temperature
1 pint sour cream
12 oz shredded Cheddar cheese
12 cloves garlic, finely minced
1 bunch green onions, chopped
1 can water-packed artichoke hearts, drained and chopped
1 round sourdough or pumpernickel loaf
1 - 2 baguette loaves French bread

Cut a hole in the top of the round bread loaf. Hollow out the bread round and set aside. Saute garlic and onions in 1 T butter until soft; set aside. Mix cream cheese and sour cream. Stir in Cheddar cheese, garlic/onion mixture, and artichoke hearts. Pour into hollowed bread round and replace the "lid". Double wrap with aluminum foil and bake at 350F for 1-1/2 to 2 hours.

Serve with sliced French baguettes.

You are reading this post on More Than Burnt Toast at http://morethanburnttoast.blogspot.com. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to the author/owner of More Than Burnt Toast. All rights reserved by Valerie Harrison.
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  1. Oh wow! You bake the dip in the bread? I love that!

  2. This dish sounds wonderful. I'm not sure my OH would appreciate all that garlic though!!

  3. In praise of the garlic...12 cloves??? Bring it on!

  4. Love garlic! Even got into eating it raw for breakfast when we lived in Andorra - when in Rome....
    A garlic festival would be sooo fun to go to!

  5. What a delicious dip.

    My poor mother had many of these birthdays when I was away at university. She did come and see me for my 21st birthday, but I'm bound to celebrate my next birthday 600 miles from home.

  6. Deeeelicious! We love garlic! Happy Birthday to your daughter and how lovely that you can set her free like that. My sons are 3 and 6 and we too love a party. Infact any excuse for a party, Birthdays, Easter, Bonfire Night, Halloween, Christmas, New Year, end of the week... we've even celebrated Thanksgiving and Diwali.

    p.s. I really love your landscape pics!

  7. First I must tell you that I did have my baked potato last night. Grilled with lots of butter, shredded cheddar cheese and lots of salt and pepper. It so hit the spot!
    Your beach looks just as relaxing as mine! What a photo.
    Garlic - I even put garlic in my scrambled eggs! Now the peanut butter cups with garlic sounds crazy but I would love to try them. I have a garlic book here somewhere and I will check it out for you.

  8. I LOVE garlic! There is no such thing as too much garlic (or onions) to me. Luckily, my husband feels the same!

  9. delicious and mouthwatering recipe!! i love garlic!! nice pic..

  10. I would have love to have seen photos of your birthday cakes - they sound so fantastic!
    I bet that garlic dip tastes divine!

  11. A minimum garlic content requirement. I like the sound of that contest. The dip sounds good.

  12. I want a piece of that bread!

  13. Thanks guys!But 12 cloves of garlic Peter??As long as we're all eating them in the dip that's alright!!!We'd knock each other out otherwise with the fumes!
    My parents eat raw garlic for breakfast for medicinal purposes Katiez..although they have gone to garlic in pill form these days.
    Yes Kelly I suppose it is the start of a trend. Everyone grows up someday. I moved 3,000 km from my parents and they moved to Canada from Britain..so it's inevitable!
    We always loved a party too Amanda!!!
    Deb I'm glad you had your potato!!! I would be so happy if someone could find me a chocolate garlic recipe!!!!
    Yes Deborah it is great if you both love garlic. Otherwise you and your husband would be on opposite ends of the room.
    Thanks Superchef.
    Someday I might post pics of all my cakes from the past Nicisme.
    Hey Kevin...we should all enter a contest in our area next year. We all love garlic!!!
    I think you would enjoy it Cynthia!!!!!

  14. All that garlic must be rich and mellow sauteed and baked before serving. This dip sounds like an easy crowd pleaser.

  15. I may make this today..i am determined to rest my blogging fingers , sit on the couch, watch cooking shows on pbs, and either spin or knit.
    Odds are none of that will happen...but the dip sounds like the perfect accompaniment to my day.
    Nice job, Valli.

  16. I feel what you feel. Like I said before my daughter just left for Ottawa at University and we will not be seeing her 'till Xmas. We miss her. Hope you'll have a great and enjoy when she comes home.

  17. this sounds fantatic!!...i just love garlic!!


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