Garlic

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Garlic

 

  1. How to Make Your Own garlic Powder

Drying garlic is an easy and safe way to keep garlic indefinitely.   Choose cloves with no bruises.  You will need a food dehydrator which cost around $100 or you can dry the garlic in your oven. Make drying racks by stretching cheesecloth over the oven racks and securing it with toothpicks. Place the garlic on the racks and turn the oven to 60C for two hours, then lower it to  54C until the garlic is completely dry and crisp.

Peel the garlic cloves. Slice the garlic thinly. A food processor works well.

Dry the garlic until crisp.

Dried garlic may be stored at room temperature in an airtight container. If you store the dried garlic in the freezer in the form of flakes, and then grind it close to the time when you will be using the garlic it will keep its amazing freshness for more than a year.

Grind the garlic. A blender gives you a mixture of powder and granules which you can separate using a fine and a coarse sieve. A coffee grinder not used for coffee is good for turning garlic flakes into powder.

  1. Curing

If you decide to cure some of your garlic just hang it by the leaves in a dry warm and well-ventilated space like your kitchen or attic.

Dry and ventilated air is important to prevent mould, and fungus. The warmer it is, the quicker the garlic will cure. For example, a 25-27C environment will cure your garlic in 2 weeks. Under cooler conditions, it may take 4-6 weeks. When cured, the stem will be dried out and the skin around the bulb feels like ricepaper.

Then once the tops and roots have dried they can be cut off and remove the outer skins without exposing the cloves. Store your garlic in a cool, well ventilated area. Avoid the fridge.

  1. Freezing garlic

Garlic can be frozen in a number of ways.

  • Chop the garlic, wrap it tightly in a plastic freezer bag or in plastic wrap, and freeze. To use just grate or break off the amount needed.
  • Freeze the garlic unpeeled and remove cloves as needed. Peel the cloves and puree them with oil in a blender or food processor using 2 parts oil to 1 part garlic. The puree will stay soft enough in the freezer to scrape out parts to use in sautéing. Freeze this mixture immediately – do not store it at room temperature. The combination of the low-acid garlic, the exclusion of air (by mixing with oil), and room-temperature storage can support the growth of Clostridium botulinum.
  1. Storing garlic in wine or vinegar

Peeled cloves may be submerged in wine or vinegar and stored in the refrigerator. A dry white or red wine is suggested; white or wine vinegars also work well. The garlic/liquid should be kept for about 4 months in the refrigerator. Discard both the cloves and the liquid if there are signs of mould or yeast growth on the surface of the wine or vinegar. The garlic-flavoured liquid and the garlic cloves may be used to flavour dishes. Do not store the garlic/liquid mixture at room temperature because it will rapidly develop mould growth.

 

 

Extreme care must be taken when preparing flavoured oils with garlic or when storing garlic in oil.

Fresh garlic and oil are a dangerous combination if left at room temperature. Because of garlic’s low acidity and oil’s lack of oxygen, they can cause botulism toxin to develop. The same hazard exists for roasted garlic stored in oil. However, peeled cloves of garlic can be added to oil and stored in the freezer for several months.

Commercially prepared garlic in oil contains a preservative to increase the acidity of the mixture and keep it safe. To make garlic-flavoured oil at home, add dehydrated garlic to olive oil in a wide mouth jar, screw on the lid, and place the jar in the refrigerator. If the olive oil turns solid, just spoon it out. Be careful, however, to always use a dry spoon.

  1. Roasting garlic

Leave the head whole and cut off the tip of the head, exposing the cloves. Allow one-half to one head per person. Put the head (or heads) in a baking dish or wrap them in aluminum foil, sprinkle with olive oil or pat with butter, and season with a little salt and pepper and some fresh or dried thyme if desired. Bake at 178C until very soft and tender (about 45 minutes to 1 hour). The roasted garlic cloves can be easily squeezed from their skins and spread with a knife.

 


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