Discussion in 'Good Eats' started by Bengal B, May 1, 2004.

  1. Bengal B

    Bengal B Founding Member

    Sep 5, 2002
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    Garlic Recipes, etc:

    Storing Garlic in Oil:

    It is a practice with some of us who want garlic immediately handy for cooking, to peel and store it in oil. Garlic is a low acid vegetable, so it needs to be acidified to prevent the growth of micro-organisms and especially to prevent the formation of botulism toxin (caution: undesirable side-effect: DEATH!). Acid treatment also prolongs the quality of garlic and prevents browning. The method is as follows:
    • Cover peeled garlic cloves with vinegar and soak the cloves for 12 to 24 hours.
    • Drain off the vinegar. It can be reused as garlic-flavored vinegar.
    • Cover the garlic cloves with oil.
    • Refrigerate the jar of garlic and oil, and use it within 3 months.
    (Source of this information is Dr. George York, the university of California at Davis.)

    To Chop or Press?

    There are some who swear by their garlic press, and others who claim that using a garlic press makes the fresh garlic taste bitter. It is certainly a quick and easy method of mincing garlic; however you do lose some of the pulp, which means that hand-chopped gives a better yield and less waste. Again, the choice is yours. If you choose to chop the garlic by hand, here's a tip from the wife of a garlic grower: Add the salt required for your recipe directly into the minced garlic while it is still on the cutting board. The salt will absorb the juices and make it easier to scoop the tiny garlic pieces off the board.

    Garlic Flavored Oil, Vinegar or Salt

    It's easy to flavor with garlic by adding peeled whole cloves of garlic to bottles of oil or vinegar (see the caution above) for two or three days before using. To make garlic salt, just bury 3 peeled and pressed garlic cloves in half a cup of salt. Add fresh-ground pepper and ground ginger to taste, if you like. Let stand for a few days in a screw-top jar. Remove garlic and use the salt as desired to flavor soups, meats, salads, etc.

    Garlic Butter

    Make logs of garlic butter and freeze them to have on hand to melt on broiled meats or to mix into fresh cooled vegetables or spread on bread. Just add mashed garlic cloves or the equivalent in dehydrated or processed garlic to suit your taste to sticks of butter (about 6 cloves fresh garlic per stick is recommended). If you wish, add a few herbs and salt lightly. Form into logs, wrap in plastic and freeze. Slice off as needed.

    Baked Whole Heads

    One of the most popular ways to serve fresh garlic is to bake whole heads to serve as an hors d'oeuvre with crunchy bread or as an accompaniment to meat or vegetables. Peel as much of the outer skin away as possible, leaving the cloves unpeeled and the head intact (optional: trim the tips of the cloves off to expose the "meat" to the oil/pepper). Place heads in covered casserole or on a piece of heavy aluminum foil. Drizzle with olive oil, salt and pepper to taste, and bake covered at 350 degrees for about 45 minutes (Mine takes over an hour in a terra-cotta garlic baker) or until cloves are soft and can be squeezed easily out of their skins onto bread or other foods.

    Roasted Garlic Vinaigrette

    Cover several minced or crushed garlic cloves with several tablespoons of olive oil in a small oven-safe dish. Roast in the oven at 300 degrees for 15 minutes, or until you see the garlic sizzling in the oil. Let it cool a bit, and whisk in wine vinegar to taste, perhaps with a bit of dry mustard, basil, whatever. Enjoy on your home-grown Boston lettuce (anything else is a poor substitute).

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