Saturday, July 29, 2017
The Great Garlic Cook-Off is one of the most well-known cooking contests in the country. Beginning in September, the Gilroy Garlic Festival puts out a call across the United States and Canada for the best garlic recipes. Hundreds of amateur chefs respond with delicious sounding recipes that run the gamut from soups to desserts and from every type of cuisine. Recent winners have included Sarsaparilla Glazed Wild West Burgers and Southwest Sweet Potatoes; Crispy Pork Belly with Caramelized Onion and Fig Agrodolce and Creamy Polenta; Warm Weather Watermelon Crabmeat Kissed South Seas Soup; and Spicy Garlic Butter Cookies with Garlic Goat Cheese and Honey.
The most delicious-sounding recipes, approximately 50, are forwarded to a professional food consultant who makes the final selection of the eight recipes. The consultant prepares each recipe to ensure correct measurements and use of ingredients. These finalists’ recipes are those considered to make the most interesting and exciting contest.
The finalists come to Gilroy to prepare their recipes on the Saturday of the festival in front of the public. By 12:15, celebrity judges pick their favorites. The winner of the Great Garlic Cook-Off is appropriately honored with a crown of garlic and goes home $5,000 richer. Second place is awarded $2,500; third place, $1,000. The other finalists are given $100 each.
If you’re interested in submitting a recipe, please see the Official Rules.
2016 contestants and recipes were as follows:
- Andre Alban (Coconut Creek, FL)
Black Butter Skirt Steaks with Herb Garlic Mushrooms and Potatoes
- Gloria Bradley (Naperville, IL)
Veggie Eggplant Mushroom Stacks, Green Chili Garlic Adobo & Peppadew Vinaigrette
- Veronica Callaghan (Glastonbury, CT)
Roasted Garlic Pizza with Spicy Rosemary Caramelized Onions, Figs & Bacon
- Mary Edwards (Long Beach, CA)
Lamb Tenderloin with Sweet Pea Risotto and Garlic Demi-Glace
- Rebecka Evans (Danville, CA)
Garlic Goat Cheese Bacon Soufflé with Creamy Garlic Mustard Sauce
- Greg Fontenot (The Woodlands, TX)
Beef Short Ribs in Garlic Balsamic Cherry Sauce
- Betty Hass (Sanibel, FL)
Wasabi-Glazed Garlic Stuffed Shrimp with Sweet Garlic Rice Crisps
- Kelly Velasco (American Fork, UT)
Garlic Risotto Stuffed Mussels with Garlic Herb Toast