Garlic is among the most common seasonings that gives a distinctive aroma loved by foodies around the world. While you may want to have several bulbs ready for the dishes you whip up at home, you may be wondering how you can best store garlic. Look no further since we came up with a list of ways you can store this much-wanted food flavoring. Check out the list below.
How to Store Garlic
Here are the best tips and tricks for garlic storage.
#1: Store whole bulb in a dark, dry place
The best way to store garlic is to keep the bulb whole or you should avoid breaking it up. When garlic is stored this way, it can last for months given the right conditions. The right conditions mean it is stored at room temperature in a dry place with suitable air circulation.
If you break apart the bulb and store them as individual cloves, its lifespan will be reduced. If you no other option but to take out a clove or two, make sure to use it within three to ten days since this will be its new lifespan.
A common question people have is whether or not they can store fresh garlic in the fridge. It is possible. However, it will last longer in a cool, dark cupboard.
#2: Freeze the garlic
While storing garlic in the fridge is not advisable, you may want to consider putting them in the freezer. This is particularly useful for unpeeled cloves and chopped garlic. Some people think frozen garlic is not as good as fresh ones. This is true but it is better to keep them somewhere instead of simply throwing the ones you are not using in the trash.
You may consider putting them in a blender or food processor and adding some water to make a puree. Then pour the pureed garlic into an ice tray and freeze them. Some people use olive oil instead of water since you can easily scrape off frozen pureed garlic by the time they want to use it.
#3: Store Garlic in oil
If you sliced more garlic than you intended to use, you can use the extra garlic to make flavoured oil. Simply allow the garlic to dry and put it in a jar before pouring olive oil on them. You can use the softened garlic slices or the oil for cooking or as a salad dressing.
One thing to remember though is to avoid putting fresh or undried garlic in oil. Doing this will allow the bacteria causing botulism to develop. But if you cannot avoid putting fresh or undried garlic in a jar of oil, you should make sure to put it in the fridge where you can keep it up for three weeks.
#4: Dry the garlic
If you are not using all of the garlic cloves for your dishes, you can dry the unused cloves. But make sure they are fresh and have no bruises or are not soft. Peel them and cut them in half. Put them in a dehydrator and heat the garlic for two hours at 140 degrees Fahrenheit. After this, reduce the temperature to 130 degrees Fahrenheit and continue heating the garlic for another two hours.
#5: Store in vinegar or wine
Using vinegar or wine is an interesting way to store garlic. You can put the cloves in a jar with vinegar or wine before putting the jar in the fridge. If you will use wine, use white wine and if you are using vinegar, go for white vinegar.
When using this method of storing garlic, make sure to monitor it for any mold or yeast formation. But this will only happen when you will not store it in a cold fridge.
What to Do With Excess Garlic?
There may be instances when you slice or mince more garlic than you need. You have the option of storing them or creating something out of them before they go bad. The following are some of the things you can do with excess garlic.
Any excess garlic you have can be used in soup, sauces, or on bread. Just chop or crush the garlic before letting it sit for a few minutes. This will allow it to keep the enzymes you want to have with the end product.
For better results, you can use a mortar and pestle to crush the garlic. Or, you could also consider using a garlic press. The end-product can give your soup, sauce, pasta sauce or toast a nice garlic flavor that many people love.
Another common question that people have is about how to preserve garlic. The best way? Pickling.
Pickling garlic tones down the strong aroma of the garlic, which many chefs prefer when they use it on the dishes they make. Its flavor will be just enough to give the dish a hint of garlic without overpowering the other flavors.
The regular process of pickling garlic may be lengthy and tedious, but there is an easier way to do it. You can simply pull peeled fresh garlic into a jar before adding vinegar and salt. Then put the jar into your fridge.
Aside from pickling garlic, you can also make garlic salt out of excess garlic. The process of making garlic salt starts with drying out the garlic. After drying the garlic, you can toss it into a food processor and chop it until it becomes fine.
At this point, you can add salt using a 4:1 ratio with the garlic. Let it blend for a few seconds, and viola – garlic salt. Just make sure not to make it too fine since it will clump together.
You can also opt to roast your excess garlic. Roasting brings out a sweet flavor that is not typical of any ordinary garlic. Roasted garlic can be used as a spread or marinade for meats. Many home chefs love doing this with extra garlic they have.
Before roasting the garlic, chop off the tip of the bulb to show a small part of the cloves. After this, wrap it in foil and add a bit of olive oil. Roast them in the oven at 350 degrees Fahrenheit for thirty minutes to one hour. You can easily squeeze the roasted garlic from the bulbs after they become soft.
Summary on How to Store Garlic
While garlic is one of the most common ingredients in many dishes, there may be instances when you prepare too much garlic for you to use. Due to this, it is important for you to know how to store them properly so you can use it for other dishes later on.
Garlic Storage FAQs
There are a number of common questions that people have about storing garlic cloves. Here are the answers to some of the most popular ones:
Can you Store Garlic in the Fridge?
Fresh garlic does not like light or moisture. This makes storing it in the fridge not a great option. Instead, store it at room temperature in a dry, dark place with lots of air circulation.
How Long can You Store Garlic?
If properly stored, a whole garlic bulb can last for 3-5 months in the pantry or cupboard. However, once broken, garlic quality decreases rapidly and should be used within a week or two.
Can Fresh Garlic be Frozen?
Fresh garlic can indeed be frozen. It’s possible to freeze unpeeled bulbs, peeled or unpeeled individual cloves or chopped garlic. One popular method if to freeze garlic cloves in olive oil before freezing.
Is Garlic in a Jar as Good as Fresh?
Garlic in a jar isn’t as good as fresh because it tends to have less flavour. The closer to the cooking time that you can peel and chop the garlic, the better.
Have your Say about Garlic Storage
Do you have any other ways of storing garlic? Tell us about it by leaving a comment below. We’d love to hear from you.
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