Wednesday, February 12, 2014

Glorious garlic- peelin' it the easy way!

head of fresh garlic

The other day, I ran across a recipe the likes of which I'd never seen before. It involves massive amounts of garlic. Like, more than seemed possible!
It takes...not cloves of garlic.
Not heads, either.


fresh garlic
Wholly inadequate supply of garlic....

Naturally, The Big Guy and I couldn't resist. The house garlic supply wasn't up to the job, so we ran out to the Costco and grabbed a big ol' 2-lb. bag. After shopping a bit, we ran across a big jar of pre-peeled garlic. Even though it was cheaper, I decided that we'd just stick with the bag we already had in the cart. "It will taste fresher, brighter!" says I. (And it wouldn't require walking all that way back across the store, heh heh! Yep. Sunday lazies, y'know?)
But...all that peeling. Cups of garlic = a LOT of peeling. More than most can take.
And I'm not a guys should know that by now. But, I'd heard a rumor.
There's an easy way to shuck a buncha garlic, super fast, and super easy.
As it turns out, it works.

Here's how to turn what's on the right of the picture...

garlic cloves

...into the pile of nekkid cloves on the left. With only a little effort.

You will need:

A large jar (I used a gallon jar with lid), or
Two large bowls of the same size, with rims
(You could probably use a large pot with a lid, too!)
A mess of garlic that needs to be peeled

Here's how we do it:

Start disassembling a head of garlic, and dump the cloves into your jar.
(If using bowls, dump 'em in one of the bowls.)

peeling fresh garlic

Place the lid on the jar.
(If using bowls, place one bowl over the other, line up the rims, and hold on tight!)

jar method for garlic

Shake that sucker! 

fresh garlic, jar method

No, really.
REALLY shake 'em up, so they bounce around like crash-test dummies!
Do this for about 30 seconds, and then check the damage.

Here's the inside view of the aftermath:

fresh garlic

Nekkid garlic!

garlic paper

fresh peeled garlic

A few things I learned along the way:
  • Only do this with "hardened", aged garlic. This won't work with soft-shelled, freshly dug garlic. My guess is that you'll just have a lot of fresh, bruised garlic with skins that are even harder to remove, if you do try it.
  • Do not attempt to do more than one head of garlic at a time- one will ALWAYS be "fresher" or less hardened-off, than the other. This results in half of your cloves being fully stripped, and bruised to death, and the other half  of 'em not even close to peeled. It's easier, and smarter, just to do one at a time. (It took a couple of tries before I figured this out. Alright, a couple-few! Four tries, total. But who's counting, right? All in the name of keepin' it easy for you, Dear Reader.)
  • Some of the cloves just aren't going to peel themselves, no matter what you do. Resort to your fingernails, when this happens. They're still going to be much easier to strip out than they were before the shake-up!
  • A dust-busting-type hand vacuum is really, really handy when half of those garlic peels drift away from the open compost bin, as you're trying to shuffle them out of the jar (or bowl). Might as well have it ready. There is a secret breeze (the little-known Allium Zephyr) that only shows up when you're trying to dump a large quantity of garlic or onion skins from one container to another, and it will be coming your way. Soon. I guarantee it. It's a corollary of Murphy's Law.

And now that I have a quart of fresh garlic, I'll bet you'd like to see what I'm going to do with it.
Casa Rodman will be giving it the taste-test tomorrow- 
if it's fit to eat, you'll see it here soon!

Happy February!


  1. Good tip! I need something about this easy and encased for chopping and mincing onions.

    1. Ooo. Wish I knew! I'd suggest a food processor for the choppin'. Never have found an easy way to peel onions, other than the usual. Sorry! :/

  2. Oh Yeah, an easy way & seems well. my mom always use fresh in her daily cooking.. I am happy she cook for us. happy days of single life.. haha..
    thanks for sharing!.


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