Garlic Mistakes That Are Ruining Your Dishes

Garlic Mistakes That Are Ruining Your Dishes


Garlic is an incredibly useful seasoning,
but it’s not impossible to misuse it. In fact, there are plenty of different ways
to get garlic wrong, and succumbing to any of these pitfalls could ruin an otherwise
delicious dish. Here are all the mistakes you should avoid
when cooking with garlic. Let’s start with the simple stuff: If you
want to use garlic in the kitchen, use garlic. All that pre-minced stuff you find in jars
at supermarkets and grocery stores is just going to steer you wrong. Garlic isn’t the most exciting thing in the
world to peel and chop, but putting yourself through the minor hassle of using actual,
fresh garlic will pay dividends during the cooking process. “The chopped stuff in a jar? That’s got preservatives in it, it stinks,
and it tastes bitter.” Some research has shown that fresh garlic
contains higher levels of allicin, an ingredient which prevents blood clots and bacterial infections. So if you’re eating that stuff that comes
pre-packaged and stewing in oil and water for weeks on end, you won’t even be enjoying
any of the amazing health benefits for which fresh garlic is renowned. “In fact, the fresher, the higher the concentration
of the active ingredients .” But if that’s not enough to convince you to
go fresh, take it from Anthony Bourdain, who wrote this in his book, Kitchen Confidential:
Adventures in the Culinary Underbelly: “Misuse of garlic is a crime. […] Avoid at all costs that vile spew you
see rotting in oil in screw-top jars. Too lazy to peel fresh? You don’t deserve to eat garlic.” If you’re buying fresh garlic, make sure it’s
actually fresh. According to Simon Richard, produce buyer
for San Francisco’s Bi-Rite Market, there are a few choice things to look out for to
ensure you’re getting the right stuff at the right time. He told Epicurious, “Local fresh garlic season runs from mid-summer
through early fall. At other times of the year, the garlic you
see in the store is probably coming out of storage.” No matter when you buy your garlic, however,
it’s always good to test what you’ve got to make sure it’s not a dud. According to Richard, you should pick the
bulb and give it a nice squeeze to make sure the outside cloves aren’t too soft or dry. CBS New York also has a great tip when it
comes to picking out the perfect bulbs. “When you buy it, nice and white like this,
all the way around, free from any sprouting whatsoever, and if there’s a little purple,
that’s ok, just a little bit.” Improperly storing garlic is probably one
of the most common mistakes people make. Making sure it’s kept in the right place will
mean it keeps its flavor and its health benefits … not to mention helping it stay fresh for
months on end. New season garlic … the kind which is harvested
in early summer … is a milder kind of garlic which is more easily digested and arguably
more flavorful than dry garlic. This type needs to be refrigerated immediately
and used within a week. Dried garlic … the kind you’re more likely
to find at a grocery store … should be stored at room temperature in a dry, dark place with
plenty of circulation. It can also be stored in a paper or mesh bag,
as long as there’s plenty of dry air around it to stop it from sprouting. Just keep it out of the refrigerator. As long as you do this, the garlic will keep
for several months, though that time period decreases significantly once you’ve started
to remove cloves from the bulb. If you’ve already minced garlic, you should
be able to keep it in an air-tight container in the refrigerator, but you still ought to
use it as soon as possible. Finally, freezing is a huge no-no … it’ll
damage the garlic’s flavor and its texture. Peeling garlic is never fun. It’s fiddly, sticky, and takes just long enough
to constitute a real pain in the neck. Some would even describe it as one of the
most tiresome duties in the kitchen. However, it’s not as bad as it seems. For starters, there’s no need to mess around
trying to find a way to scratch off the skin. Nor do you need to cut off any more of the
clove than just the top in order to more easily peel it … this is largely inefficient, and
will waste as much time as it does garlic. There are two simple ways you can peel a garlic
clove. The first involves placing the clove on a
chopping board, placing the flat side of a knife against it and pushing down with your
hand. It will crush the garlic itself downwards
and loosen the skin, allowing you to take it off with almost zero effort. The second method involves pulling apart all
the cloves and placing them inside a bowl and resting another bowl on top. Then, shake the bowls as hard as you can for
around 20 seconds, after which the cloves should have pretty much peeled themselves. Empty them out, separate the skin and the
cloves, and you’re left with a fully-peeled bulb of garlic. You can also try this trick using a mason
jar. Trust us, you’ll never look back. Chopping garlic isn’t the most difficult process
in the world … especially if you’ve got experience in the kitchen … but that doesn’t
mean it’s not possible to make some errors while you’re at it. Firstly, speed is good, since taking too much
time chopping means the garlic could oxidize and become bitter in flavor. Of course, it’s worth remembering that at
no point should you actually rush to chop garlic; knives are knives, after all. The slices you cut from the clove should always
be identically-sized. Keeping them consistent in thickness and length
means that, should you use slices rather than diced garlic in your recipe, they’ll be less
likely to burn during cooking. When dicing, keep your hand steady, your knife
under control, and make sure not to have any mismatched pieces once the clove has been
diced. Each little piece of garlic should be the
same size to keep it cooking consistently and prevent any from burning. Yeah, we get it. Buying a garlic press is a tempting idea. After all, what could possibly be wrong with
a handy tool which crushes all your garlic into mush without any of the hassle of chopping
and dicing? As it turns out, a lot. One of the many, many problems with garlic
presses is that mush. Garlic should never be chopped too fine and
keeping the texture rough and well-defined makes all the difference in the finished dish. According to Serious Eats, chopping garlic
is also better for delivering a more mellow flavor, whereas pressed garlic is more aggressive
and intense. “That was intense.” Finely pressed garlic can also burn easily,
making them good to use in no-cook sauces but pretty much useless anywhere else. And then you’ve got the fact that the press
itself can only be used to press garlic, meaning it takes up lots of valuable space in the
kitchen for little reward. Finally, how much time are you really saving
by pressing garlic? The whole process doesn’t happen much quicker
than a decent cook can chop up a clove. So why waste the money? So you think you’re ready. You have a nice bulb of fresh, seasonal garlic. You’ve stored it well. You’ve peeled it, diced it, recycled your
garlic press responsibly, and now it’s time to throw it in the pan. Right? Wrong. Lower the garlic and step away from the pan
… because, yes, adding garlic to a dish too soon can ruin the whole thing. Here’s the thing: garlic burns really easily. Like, really, really easily. And chopping it into little pieces will make
it cook even more quickly. It’s crucial that you don’t add the garlic
to the pan until at least half-way through the cooking process, in the case of stir-fries
and sautés, or very soon before you add a liquid element, such as pasta sauce, to the
pan, which will bring down the temperature and prevent burning. If in doubt, add the garlic later rather than
sooner … it’s always better to have it come out undercooked than overcooked. Besides, raw garlic is good for you, dontcha
know? “Garlic’s said to do everything, ward off
the common cold, lower high blood pressure, and reduce your risk of cancer.” So far, the worst consequences of falling
for any of these garlic traps could involve a lessening of flavor, a messy chopping board,
or a burnt clove. These are all issues you’d probably expect
to happen … but it’d be more alarming if you found your garlic turning blue or green. It can happen, though. The sulfur contained in the garlic reacts
with copper, which you might find in water, butter, or lemon juice. And thanks to enzymes contained in the garlic,
copper sulfate is formed and a blue-green hue appears as a result. If you heat garlic too slowly, use lots of
butter or lemon juice, or refrigerate your garlic, this can end up happening … luckily,
however, even blue garlic is safe to eat. Green garlic can happen because of the chemical
precursors contained in older garlic, and the shade of green you see in your garlic
can actually indicate how intense the flavor is going to be. It can happen because you left your chopped
garlic out for too long before cooking, because you cooked your garlic together with onions,
or because you added acid to the recipe before the garlic. Of course, seasoned garlic pros might have
never made these mistakes … or, at the very least, are long past making them anymore. So where can you go once you’ve perfected
the art of cooking with garlic? Maybe it’s time to give up buying garlic in
the store. Planting and growing your own garlic can be
an immensely rewarding experience, not to mention cost-effective and environmentally-friendly. If you do make the switch to home-growing,
however, there are still a few mistakes you need to keep a lookout for. You’ve got to plant it at the right time,
for example. If you plant too early, the garlic shoots
can rise too high and draw water from the clove, potentially killing it. It’s also important to make sure it’s planted
the right way up … garlic shoots grow from specific areas of the clove, and planting
it upside-down will make the garlic work harder to get to the surface, which can cause problems
when it comes to harvesting. Garlic requires deep planting, too … at
least five inches deep … to mitigate the effects of freeze-thaw frost heaving during
the winter. These are only a few of the roadblocks you
might run into when planting your own garlic, but they’re all easily avoided if you know
what you’re doing. Get it right, however, and you’ll never want
to buy from a store again. This is a painful one to bring up, but that
doesn’t make it any less true. Sometimes, the worst mistake you can make
with garlic is using it at all. The plant’s versatility means it’s suitable
for pretty much every savory dish ever created, but that doesn’t mean it needs to be used. According to Feast columnist Anna Jones, overuse
of garlic in modern cooking is a genuine problem, especially in vegetarian dishes. “I like to keep some meals more gently flavored,
so leave it out altogether. More subtle dishes don’t need garlic, and
that should be celebrated.” Chef Simon Rimmer suggests using alternatives
to garlic, such as paprika. Other garlic substitutes could include lemon
juice, grated zest, balsamic, sherry vinegar, palm sugar, maple syrup, or honey. Think carefully next time you find yourself
picking up a clove of garlic to use in your next recipe … you might well decide that
the best thing you can possibly do is put it back down again. Check out one of our newest videos right here! Plus, even more Mashed videos about your favorite
stuff are coming soon. Subscribe to our YouTube channel and hit the
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72 Comments

  1. Says a garlic press should never be used for cooked garlic while showing a clip of GORDON FUCKING RAMSEY using a garlic press for cooked garlic. You guys are a parody of yourselves.

  2. Honestly I find freezing cloves preserve a lot of its flavour and stops it from SPROUTING which makes it bitter! I never store garlic at room temp because it either moulds, sprouts or dries out. Frozen garlic straight to the pan is still delicious and slightly sweet from the freezing. Also, dare I say, it peels even easier when frozen.

  3. They don't call it "the stinking rose" for nothing! I love Garlic and found this video to be extremely interesting. Thanks for the upload. 😊😎

  4. I like garlic but also don't like it. I like the taste but don't want to eat eat directly. That's why I always minced it

  5. Am I the only one who loves lots of raw or near raw garlic? I actually love that intense flavor that a lot of people try to avoid. What I like, most people would find very very overpowering.

  6. NSA got a camera in my kitchen. They saw I used minced garlic from a jar and then decided to recommend me this video.

  7. This just makes me want to go back to granulated garlic. What a pain. Can't even press it? What a high maintenance ingredient… especially growing it!
    Sorry, but I'll be keeping my garlic press.

  8. That the majority of Americans are too lazy to peel cloves of garlic (as shown in the video, this is pretty easy) comes as no surprise: after all, this is the nation that invented aerosol "cheese".

  9. I usually buy GARLIC, by the bag @ COSTCO, but the last 2x that garlic came from MEXICO, long before halfway down they wereALL DRY/ I iever get that stuff again,,I’ll take it back for a refund, We use lots of garlic ,in many ways, the current package is from CALIFORNIA, THE BEST, HAVE you ever bought CHINESE GARLIC ? I been seeing it in the supermarkets, I am NOT WILLING TO TRY IT
    I always AVOID ANYTHING FOODSTUFF, FROM CHINA !,, Cheers from NJ

  10. I usually buy GARLIC, by the bag @ COSTCO, but the last 2x that garlic came from MEXICO, long before halfway down they wereALL DRY/ I iever get that stuff again,,I’ll take it back for a refund, We use lots of garlic ,in many ways, the current package is from CALIFORNIA, THE BEST, HAVE you ever bought CHINESE GARLIC ? I been seeing it in the supermarkets, I am NOT WILLING TO TRY IT
    I always AVOID ANYTHING FOODSTUFF, FROM CHINA !,, Cheers from NJ

  11. Imported Garlic (where I live) is DEAD because it is IRRADIATED to kill any organisms it may contain. It won't germinate if you plant it.

  12. I actually bought an older hand crack washing machine used for clothing, it takes a matter of 3 cranks to peal depending on how many are needed😏

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  14. Sorry, heat neutralizes the health-giving benefits of allicin. Allicin is produced when garlic is cut up or chopped combining two garlic cells: alliin and alliinase. If you want the complete health-giving benefits, let the chopped garlic rest for minutes to increase allicin and eat raw.

  15. Wow – zero mention of avoiding garlic from China, where they bleach and chemically process the cloves. Don't buy garlic that has the roots clean cut off the clove. The FDA doesn't require domestic growers to remove the roots fully, so always look that there is some trace of them still on.

  16. I've always enjoyed garlic. But I've found recently that raw onions and raw garlic were behind the gastrointestinal distress I'd experienced for so many years!

  17. Garlic is delicious and medicinal especially if you have high blood pressure or blood sugar problems! Eat plenty of fresh GARLIC!

  18. If you want your steak to have a hint of garlic, but you don't want your breath to smell of it, smear some garlic on the edge of your plate on the side you are sitting. You will smell the garlic but not ingest it. If your clove has the beginning of a garlic sprout, cut it out, for it makes the garlic bitter.

  19. I wanna see someone talk about all the different varieties in one of these videos. There are Porcelain and Purple Striped families, which has its own sub families of Marbled and Glazed. Do one with a Creole or Artichoke which has much smaller bulbs and many many more cloves per bulb. Or talk about Rocambole garlic, one you are probably familiar with, compared to Asians and Turbans, or the incredibly tightly packed Silverskins that have long shelf lives with proper curing due to how many layers of paper they put on. There's more to it than just hardneck and softneck. Hot climates have to grow different kinds of garlic than colder climates.

    Like I wanna see someone peel a bulb of garlic that has 40+ cloves on it. They are a lot smaller and require a special technique to get the skins off.

  20. The most important thing to check for when buying ANY Garlic, is to make sure it was not grown in China. Chinese imported garlic has no roots and is concave and smooth, California garlic has little roots on the bottom. I found fresh Garlic from Aldi with a tag on it stating it was grown in China. Garlic grown in China is often grown in contaminated soil cantaining heavy metals and fertilized with raw human waste. Check out the youtube videos on this subject. In fact, you should stay away from any foodstuff products for consumption by humans and especially children and animals..

  21. In the thumbnail, that fungus on the garlic looks angry! Like, it can't wait to eat your liver and punch holes in your brain.

  22. My garlic went blue while I was cooking it and I was so confused. I ended up through it out because I had never seen that before. Glad to know the reason why and that it’s safe 🙂

  23. I think I’m part Vampire, because I try to not cook with it (I can tolerate a little, but when garlic is a major flavor point, I don’t like it).

  24. It'd be nice if someone would make a garlic press type thing that instead of pressing it would slice the little clove into wafer thin sheets utilizing strong lawyer or some type of stainless steel razor blade no one's ever thought about that I may have to try to invent a thing

  25. Foodie nonsense… Pickled garlic is perfect for certain applications where fresh garlic is too sweet or too crunchy…and it won't leave your hands smelling like a garlic clove. The reason we have powdered garlic, pickled garlic, dried garlic and black garlic is because it has different uses and fresh garlic is not meant to be used in every application. You want to shave some fresh garlic on your Pizza Hut pizza? Yeah, good luck with that!

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