...is it really that much trouble to peel garlic?

23b88974 7a89 4ef5 a567 d442bb75da04  avatar
  • 2518 views
  • 18 Comments

18 Comments

QueenSashy September 20, 2012
No :)
 
QueenSashy September 20, 2012
No :)
 
Judson September 19, 2012
I will cut the very end off each clove then turn 90 degrees and make slice, just through the skin, lengthwise. Then peel. Takes about three seconds.
 
cookbookchick September 19, 2012
btw, I'm with Jacques Pepin on the little green garlic shoots -- just leave 'em in! Not worth the bother to remove them and I have never noticed any bitterness from them. If it's good enough for Jacques..
 
cookbookchick September 19, 2012
I use a tap with my meat pounder when the cloves are hard to peel. And I agree that the zen of cooking is a great way to unwind.
 
boulangere September 18, 2012
In How to Eat Supper, the wonderfully ebullient Lynne Rosetto Kasper tells the story of a friend's garlic rock - literally a flat-bottomed rock that she uses to smash cloves of garlic so that (a) the skins slip right off, and (b) they're ready to mince easily. Sure, the flat side of a knife, or a bench scraper work great. But I collect rocks shaped like footprints (long story for another time), and the story is so great to recount when I have a kitchen full of people for whom I'm cooking.
 
bigpan September 18, 2012
I enjoy every aspect of preparing meals and purposely choose slow over fast. Before I retired I found cooking a great calming way to unwind and leave the office in the office.
Good music and wine for the cook is also a must
So, peeling a few cloves of garlic is a pleasure.
Use good stainless steel utensils as a natural cleanser of the garlic smell on your hands.
 
@greenstuff: depends how hard you smash. If you just whack it hard enough to split the clove and open the peel, it won't be too strong - the strength of alliums depends on an enzymatic reaction, so the finer the preparation, the more enzymatic conversion happens, the stronger the taste. So lightly smashed is milder than sliced, which is milder than minced, which is milder than pressed - and all of them will be stronger if allowed to sit for a few minutes before adding to the dish.
 
Ophelia September 18, 2012
When I'm just using a couple of cloves or a head of garlic I'll peel them myself, if I'm using more than that sometimes I'll buy a pound of pre-peeled from the asian grocery. There was a month or so when the garlic I was getting at the supermarket had tiny little cloves that were hard to peel and had thin skins that were difficult to separate from the garlic once smashed... not sure what was up with that.
I wouldn't buy the pre-peeled individually packaged cloves though, that just seems like a huge waste of resources.
 
Diana B. September 18, 2012
Did you mean this to be an answer to this post: http://www.food52.com/hotline/16768-garlic-fresh-or-pre-peeled-i-always-buy-fresh-but-the-last-cooking-class-i-went-to-at-canyon-ranch
 
Greenstuff September 18, 2012
For some applications, I far prefer not to smash the garlic clove. Smashed garlic is a lot stronger than cut. And that Saveur trick works without smashing, but it does leave the cloves kind of bruised looking. Yes, peeling garlic can be time consuming and a little sticky. But that's what I generally do.
 
Reiney September 18, 2012
Depends on how fresh it is and what you're going to use it for. If you need the garlic clove completely intact, and the skin is really stuck on there, it can be a pain. But if you are just mincing it anyway, the smashing with a side of a knife trick works for me.
 
alex83 September 18, 2012
For a single clove. Pinch both ends with index and thumbs. Twist while applying pressure. It should loosen up to give you a clean clove that's also intact, making it easier to slice and/or dice.
 

Voted the Best Reply!

ReneePussman September 18, 2012
Not at all. I have learned a pretty amazing trick over the years. Smash up the whole bulb and put it in a medium metal mixing bowl. Then, invert another bowl of the exact same size over the top. Hold the two mixing bowls together by their rims and shake VIGOROUSLY! The garlic will be perfectly peeled at the bottom of the bowl and all the skins separated, sitting on top for easy disposal. In fact, here is a video link.

http://m.saveur.com/article/Video/video-How-to-Peel-a-Head-of-Garlic-in-Less-Than-10-Seconds
 
Melusine September 18, 2012
A soup can does wonders for smashing cloves right out of their little skins. My method of choice, since I rarely need the aesthetics of a whole, peeled clove. It also breaks the cloves apart, making it easier to pick out the bitter green inner shoots. I know the heavy end of a chef's knife is the classic choice, but hitting a knife blade with the palm of my hand...makes me squeamish.
 
I find it an annoyance.
 
Quinciferous September 18, 2012
It depends on the garlic. Yes, those fat cloves in the US are not too much trouble, but try peeling enough Indian garlic for a large dish. The tiny cloves are much harder to fuss with, and whenever I am in India I try to enlist at least one dedicated garlic-peeler as an assistant! I can definitely imagine using pre-peeled sometimes in that situation.
 
sexyLAMBCHOPx September 18, 2012
no, i dont think so.
 
Recommended by Food52