Everyone has a different way to peel garlic. Some people insist they don’t have to peel garlic at all and that simply putting it in the garlic press is enough. Some people think you should rip into the bulb, unwrap each clove and store each clove of garlic separately.
I think that’s overly complicated and frankly, kind of silly. I learned a trick from an Italian ex-boyfriend’s grandmother and have been using it ever since. She was almost as obsessed with garlic as I am. (I’m a firm believer in the idea that any recipe that calls for one clove of garlic always wants two.)
I even tried garlic ice cream once. I’m not going to lie, that’s probably the only combination of garlic + food I have ever had that I don’t ever want to taste again.
Aside from being absolutely delicious, garlic has a multitude of health benefits.
It improves your heart health. Garlic has LDL lowering properties (LDL is bad cholesterol), which prevents your arteries from filling with gunk, which in turn leads to heart attacks and heart disease!
It’s a proven antibiotic and has anti-fungal properties. Raw garlic is a potent antibiotic, especially active against fungal infections, with antibacterial and antiviral effects as well. An effective home remedy for colds is to eat several cloves of raw garlic at the first onset of symptoms.
It fights cancer. Studies conducted by the Italian researchers showed that a diet rich in onion and garlic results in a significant drop in the risk of cancer formation. Various comparative Swiss and Italian studies have compared the link between allium herbs consumption and cancer development.
AND it reduces blood pressure. In some studies, aged garlic has been shown to be as effective as the medication Atenolol at reducing blood pressure over a 24 week period (that’s less than 6 months!)
That’s a lot of health benefits and the list above isn’t even complete!
Like I said, garlic can go in just about anything (except ice cream, apparently). But I’ve rounded up a few of my absolute favourite recipes and I thought I’d share with them with you (a lot come from this site, actually.)
Garlic Avocado Cream Sauce (it’s dairy free!)
You only need an avocado, two cloves of garlic, 2 tablespoons of lemon juice, 1 tablespoon of olive oil, and ¼ cup of fresh basil.
You can find the whole recipe here and you can use it on pasta, as a salad dressing, or over any protein you can think of.
Eggplant Spinach Dip
You need a large eggplant, ½ pound of frozen spinach, a can of water chestnuts, 2-3 garlic cloves, ½ cup of bone broth (or mushroom broth will work), ¼ of an oil of your choice, and spices to taste.
This is an awesome replacement for most mayo-based dips and I really like it with nachos. You can find the full recipe here
Gluten Free Pizza Crust
You’ll need 1 pound of cauliflower florets, 2 whisked eggs (flax or chicken) and two cloves of garlic (I add in the garlic).
You can get the full recipe here. I like to turn this into a pita-type bread or sandwich rounds or use it with the dip I list above.
How To Peel Garlic
But I think I got sidetracked. The secret to peeling garlic?
Put the bulb in a mason jar, screw the lid on and shake it vigorously (kids love doing this) for 30 seconds or a minute. Then dump the contents, rescue your peeled cloves and tuck them in a plastic bag for safety.
Want to read more about the proper ways to cook with garlic? Check out this article.