My first memory of garlic is from my Papa. Anytime he was sick, he would make a paste from garlic and smear it on his toast. He swore it got rid of his cold – but it also got rid of anyone around him! There is definite truth in the fact that it has healing properties as an antibiotic and anti-fungal.
Aside from therapeutic uses, it’s one of the tastiest additions to almost any dish and doesn’t always have to have the assertive aroma that it carries when minced. When whole, it is mild and when roasted, it is not only mild, but also sweet from being caramelized.
How To Pick Garlic:
Look for firm, plump, and tightly closed bulbs with dry papery skins. Avoid heads with soft and shrivelled cloves or ones with green sprouts popping out.
How To Store Garlic:
Store in an open container in a cool area (not the refrigerator) that is both dry and dark and away from other foods. Here, they can last up to eight weeks. Garlic pots are great for storing garlic.
How To Prepare Garlic:
There’s no need to wash, just peel and trim the end off and you are ready to go! And did you know the finer you chop your garlic, the stronger the flavour? It’s true!
To remove the skin easily, place the clove under the flat side of a chef knife and give it a slight whack with the base of your hand. The pressure will crack open the skin and slightly flatten the clove, making the skin pop off. And since the clove is slightly flattened, it will make it easier to slice and mince the garlic.
Depending on what you are making, you can prepare your garlic in a variety of ways: leave whole, roast the entire bulb, mince, grate, press, slice, or mash into a paste – just remember, the finer you chop garlic, the stronger the flavour.
One fresh medium clove will give you about ½ teaspoon minced.
Kary’s Garlic Tips:
- Chopping garlic always leaves a strong smell on your hands. The best way to remove the door is to wet your hands and rub them on a stainless steel object, like a spoon or even the inside of your sink. Wash with soap and water.
- To remove the odour of garlic from your cutting board, make a paste of baking soda and water to scrub your board with.
- To remove the skin from garlic easily, place the garlic under the flat side of a chef knife and give it a slight whack with the base of your hand. The pressure will crack open the skin and slightly flatten he clove, making the skin pop off.
- If you chop garlic with a little sprinkle of salt, it won’t stick to the knife as much.
- To add the faintest flavour of garlic to a salad, rub the inside of a bowl with a cut clove of garlic.
- To make garlic chives, place individual garlic cloves, point side up in a drinking glass or container. Add enough water to keep the bottom of the cloves moist. Soon you will start to see garlic chives grow. Snip them and use them like chives to garnish and flavour dishes. Remember to change the water when it gets cloudy.
What Does Garlic Go Well With:
Basil, beans, broccoli, cabbage, cheese, chicken, cilantro, cream, curries, eggplant, fennel, lamb, lemon, leeks, lentils, lime, mushrooms, mustard, olive oil, onions, pasta, parsley, potatoes, salad, soy sauce, steak, tomatoes, and vinegar.