Garlic has been on my mind of late. Garlic has been more on my hands and on my breath ( which is not really noticed here, or, if noticed, not reproachable ) than in my cooking. It seems to have been a long winter, even though we have just reached January, but I’m suddenly keenly aware of the wonder of fresh garlic. Whoever said absence makes the heart grow fonder clearly wasn’t very enamoured of the absentee. I am in the process of writing a book about where we live and what we eat, illustrated with pictures of both. The current subject is garlic which has entailed trawling through my archives for pictures of garlic, and there I have come upon a mass of images of spring and summer garlic. The very early garlic looking like spring onions, and the later fatter bulbs with creamy white cloves. It makes me want to cook summer dishes with sweet garlic. This takes me back to the garlic on my hands. I have been removing the green germs from the separated cloves of 6 large heads of dried garlic in order to make a Sweet Garlic Confit in the hope that it might be a passable substitute for the missing flavour of its summer brethren . Having been twice poached in milk,the result sits pallidly in the fridge, where I have been assured that it will be good for 7 days, by which time I should be on the the next chapter and up to my neck in celeriac and all its attendant problems.