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Gourmet Living

A gourmet is a person who is knowledgeable in fine food and drink.


Garlic Vinegar

Garlic Vinegar

To make, put 4 to 6 minced garlic cloves in 1 quart of cider vinegar. Let stand, covered for 20 days. Strain, then bottle.

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.)

Roasting

Garlic cloves can be roasted with an asador or a small dry skillet over high heat. Leave the skin on whole garlic cloves and roast until the exterior turns brown and the interior is soft. When the garlic is cool enough to handle, remove its skin.

Garlic Tips:

Choose garlic by weight and size; the heavier it is, the fresher it is likely to be. Large heads have bigger cloves that take longer to dry out.

The more garlic is cooked, the milder it gets. Roasting produces a mild, sweet, nutty flavor; boiling, a mild flavor; sautéing, a moderately strong flavor with more bite than boiled but less intensity than raw.

Garlic sautéed with onion will almost always burn. To avoid this, add the garlic at the end.

Fresh garlic does not burn as quickly as older garlic because it has more moisture.

The green germ that grows in the center of each clove need not be removed in fresh garlic. After the garlic has aged, the green part becomes bitter and should be discarded.

Do not store garlic in the refrigerator. Keep it in a cool, dry place in a net bag or a garlic keeper (a covered, ventilated ceramic dish).

Chop garlic at the very last minute. As soon as it is chopped, it begins to change and lose some of its characteristic pungency.

To make chopping easier, add a pinch of salt, which keeps the garlic from sticking to the knife.

 

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