Cooking Hint of the Day - Garlic 101greenspun.com : LUSENET : Cooking & Crafts : One Thread
The complaint about handling garlic is usually the strong and persistent odor that it imparts to your hands. So, do you chop garlic yourself or buy a convenience product? The easiest and quickest way to peel garlic is to crush a clove with the flat of a large knife. If there is a green sprout, remove it or it will add an unwanted bitterness. The garlic can then be sliced, chopped, minced, or mashed, all of which involve a knife and your hands. If you need minced or mashed garlic, a less messy alternative is a garlic press. If you are not going to use garlic shortly after you cut it, refrigerate it in an air-tight container, or it will turn bitter. Although using fresh garlic can make all the difference in the world, you can also purchase garlic minced, mashed, or as a paste in a tube. You can also buy peeled cloves. While the first three save time and your hands, they are not exact flavor substitutes. They all have additives - such as acids, oils, salt, or potassium sorbate - to help preserve the garlic. These products have a much milder flavor, and the additives impart additional, potentially unwanted, flavors such as tanginess and saltiness. The price of handling fresh garlic must be balanced against its benefits.
-- Karen (email@example.com), March 07, 2002