Yesterday was the last day vendors at our public market were offering heaps of good basil, and the garlic is getting towards end of season, so I made way too much pesto yesterday. I used the trick illustrated in this video to peel the garlic, and it works pretty well. Consider this an open thread.
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Unless it is clogging the streets and disrupting traffic, there is no such thing as “too much pesto.”
MrsFromOhio freezes it in ice cubes trays, then bags it for long-term freezer storage. How splendid to defrost one of these little chunks of desire with some fresh-cooked pasta on a cold winter’s night, remembering the sight, smell and sound of a season past.
I confess to using the already minced kind from a jar.
@BruceFromOhio: I froze most of it, too.
Most of us don’t need a whole clove at a time. I appreciate the tip, maybe I’ll need to do that some time.
After cutting the ends off I smash a clove or two with the flat of a knife. Peels pretty well.
The problem that I see with that method is that it bruises the garlic. Which is fine if you’re putting one (or two!) minced cloves into your red sauce. But if you’re making Forty Clove Chicken, you’re courting disaster.
Great peeling tip! I seldom if ever need an entire head, though. I wonder if it works for 3-4 cloves?
Guess it’s still the whack-with-the-side-of-my-knife method for me.
My basil didn’t do well at all this year–barely managed 4 cups of leaves, and had to flesh them out with arugula. Pesto was still good, but next year the approach to basil will have to change. I planted it in containers, and I think the heat wave stunted them. Next year, they go in the ground.
I only lurk here, but I had to break my silence to say “This.”
Great thread. Tonight I will make my last fresh pesto and from hear on until next year its what I have frozen or store bought. unfortunately I got a lot less out of my garden then usual.
I do as well and the trick is you have to water the heck out of them on warm sunny days. I am talking 2 or 3 times on days north of 90.
Mmm… Nice omelet for a Sunday morn.
Great trick. Now, if only I had the space in a tiny cluttered house and kitchen for those extra bowls. And that’s before I consider even buying the things; and yeah, I’ve never had need of a whole bulb of fresh garlic at one time.
On the topic of pre-chopped and portioned garlic (and some other herbs); anyone else tried Trader Joe’s little blister packs of frozen cubed garlic ?
@Napoleon: Yeah, they need their water. I used pretty big pots so I got by with once a day. They make some stuff that really takes up water like crazy, some sort of granular stuff that will swell as it absorbs that you can mix with the potting soil. Some soils have it in there already. One of my bushes has become home for an interesting critter.
Is there going to be a “Dr. Who” open thread? Because I have questions, and I strongly suspect BBC America cut a huge chunk out of last night’s episode.
(I have to go out for a couple of hours, so there’s not a huge rush.)
@jeffreyw: Oh, a critter complete with warning label. Do you know what type/if it’s poisonous?
@jeffreyw: I think you are speaking of Oasis. It helps.
And is that an orb spider? I have them.
Raven (formerly stuckinred)
From 11,000 feet above the California desert let me say that pesto is way overrated! Try the garlic broth and minastrone recipe from the Vegetarian Epicure cookbook.
It’s beautiful. But is it an Aragog-sized thing, or more of a Shelob?
@Kristine: It is a Black and Yellow Garden Spider, Argiope aurantia, considered harmless to humans.
I just whack the pieces I’m gonna need with the side of the knife or with my Garlic Twist.
If you don’t have a Garlic Twist, go look it up – best device ever for mincing garlic & also good for mincing ginger, etc. I love kitchen gadgets that work, are relatively cheap, and will fit in the utensil drawer – this one meets all those requirements. Plus cleans up a lot easier than a garlic press.
@Kristine: Depends. Are you a fly by any chance? It looks like a garden spider.
@Amir Khalid: This specimen measures 3 inches from tip of the back legs to the tip of the front legs.
I think there’s more to this than a “mistake”.
Yemeni jet mistakenly bombs army post, kills 30
“SANAA, Yemen (AP) — A government warplane mistakenly bombed an army position in southern Yemen, killing at least 30 soldiers and wounding many more, military and medical officials said Sunday.
The officials, who spoke on condition of anonymity because they were not authorized to release the information, said there were unconfirmed reports that militants arrived at the school soon after the airstrike and killed an unspecified number of wounded troops.”
I’ll use the trick on several heads, mince up all the garlic, pack it tight and add enough neutral oil (canola, not olive) to cover. I’ll let it steep in the refrigerator for a day. Then I take teaspoon fulls and put them in the bottom of a freeze tray (shallow ice cube usually) and freeze them. Double-bag to protect from freezer odors, and I’ve got minced garlic ready to hand for a week or two.
As for avoiding bruising for 40 clove chicken: feh, I say. If the bruised garlic sat for several hours prior to use it might be an issue. As it is, the effects are too minimal for concern in my experience.
Raven (formerly stuckinred)
@Corner Stone: How’d them cocks do while I was away? :)
@Raven (formerly stuckinred): They had every chance to win it, and should have.
Throwing 3 INTs against Vandy isn’t ideal but 2 INTs against Auburn is a killer.
And personally, I think the late TD call where Auburn “recovered” the fumble before he went out of bounds was a blown call.
But in any event, Cocks D was strong and Ingram was a madman again. Garcia just killed them. Threw 2 balls right at Auburn, no doubters. And the last one I was screaming at him before he ever released the ball, it was that bad a decision.
I have found that it’s best, if you’re going to freeze pesto, to not freeze it with the garlic or cheese in it as the garlic loses a lot of flavor. Better to process the basil and olive oil, and freeze that.
Someone else in a thread here a couple weeks back posted this link for roasted garlic suggestions. Apparently you can freeze the garlic oil as well as the roasted garlic, but I’m not sure for how long you can freeze it and still have it retain its flavor.
Moar garlic pleeze!
And UofH Cougs won a shootout on Thursday so that’s always good.
Love this tip. Thanks.
My basil is blooming up a storm. I haven’t used much of it. Isn’t basil supposed to become bitter once it blooms or something? It’s been so damn hot that I got lazy about cutting off the blooms and now the bees are very happy. I keep thinking I might cut the blooms and harvest new growth, then I feel lazy again.
Because so much has bloomed and died and seeds have fallen, I now have new basil coming up under the old basil. Perhaps I’ll be a bit better about pinching the blooms now that fall is here.
You posted this spider the other day and I neglected to say how beautiful it is.
Observant naturalists will have noticed that this is the rare 7-legged mutant variety.
@RossInDetroit: It is missing a leg, seems to get around fine without it.
I used this trick last night on just a few cloves and with much smaller plastic bowls, one larger than the other so that they basically interlocked. Worked like a charm.
A Garlic Thread? you people are just sick. :p
I recommend frequent trips to Denny’s and Whitecastle for alla youse until you are cured of your foodie-itis.
Bless you for this link! I buy several heads at a time, peel everything, then mince in the food processor with some olive oil and store that in the fridge. It’s a tip from Crescent Dragonwagon’s Passionate Vegetarian, and it greatly speeds my cooking while providing me with always-fresh garlic. If you only take the lid off the jar for short periods, the flavor stays much stronger.
Villago Delenda Est
You’re not implying that the “government warplane” may have been piloted by a militant sympathizer, are you?
Because we KNOW for a fact that the loyalty of the pilots is unimpeachable…
Oh how I love garlic! Friday marked my 37th trip around the sun, so I took the day off of work to hang out with my wife and kids. For dinner, I made bow tie pasta with shrimp and sausage in a buttery sauce. I used lots of fresh basil, fresh oregano, and a TON of garlic. I have one of those sleeves that you put a garlic clove in and roll it until the peel comes off. My children become enraged if this task is not left to them.
I could hear my mother-in-law screaming at my wife over the phone: “How can you let him cook for himself on his birthday?!! He works all week and you don’t!! You need to take better care of him!!!” I asked to cook. I cook on most of my days off. I LOVE cooking. I like it as a creative outlet. I like to share it with people that I care about. I like to taste it myself. It’s my hobby! Besides, my 6 year old son (who is flat out meshuggenah, I mean nuttier than squirrel shit) and our 5 year old sweet but demanding little girl are PLENTY of work. I work for wages. She works at home. They work on her sanity.
Besides, she made a cake for me from scratch, covered it with fondant, and sculpted my boy Bender from Futurama out rice krispy treats wrapped him in fondant and detailed him in homemade royal icing for a cake topper! She is developing into a really talented cake decorator. Her portfolio is get more impressive all of the time. Once both of the crumb snatchers are in school, she will take a job a few shifts a week at a fancy schmancy bakery and view it as an apprenticeship with an eye toward her own very small business some day.
B W Smith
@jeffreyw: Beautiful spider. My one-half Native American grandfather told me fables as a child about these spiders. He called them writing spiders because of the beautifully elaborate webs they make. He also told me to never say my name near the spider. He said legend had it that the spider would then write your name in his web and you would die. I have no idea if that is an actual Native American legend or if he made it up to scare me. But it worked, some 40 years later I will not utter any name around those spiders.
In the right small/medium community, and with a few recommendations, this is pure gold.
Can’t tell you how many times something in this category is asked about/talked about on my local community message board.
@Villago Delenda Est:
I’ve got a feeling we’ve stuck our dick into the towel rack again.
Oh, and I love garlic, cilantro and broccoli! But not Stalin.
Fudge the haters.
At the moment we have the dubious distinction of living in the community where Bristol Palin bought a home in the Phoenix area, but I am actively seeking to switch employers and move back to the east and be closer to home and closer to an ocean. Companies in Durham, N.C., Charleston, S.C. and Manassas, VA have recently received copies of my resume. Provided one of those potential employers decides to give me a go, local laws concerning a food business will be a consideration in where we buy our next home.
p.s. – How could I have made your name blue?
Minced garlic out of a jar user here.
I hang my head in shame…but I won’t stop. I hate peeling those little clove bastards.
@Lockewasright: If you hover your cursor over the bottom right corner of a post you should see “Reply” pop up. Click that and it auto does an @ reply to my comment.
Or you could tell me you think the Stillers will beat my Texans today. That would make me blue also, too.
OK, that garlic-peeling trick is bad-ass, and I’m trying it later today!! Thanks!
I do both, depending. If I’m going to flash fry something like stir fry veggies then minced garlic out of a jar holds up way better than fresh. If I’m slow cooking a sauce then fresh is better, IMO.
@B W Smith: “Writing Spider” is one of the names these go by. I may go out and mutter Rick Perry a few times.
@Lockewasright: Lady next community over, about 20 minute drive, got so busy she opened a store front and hired assistants. In the last two years I’ve seen 2 or so individuals get solid recommendations on the board. And they seem to stay as busy as they choose to be.
Just fyi, may not be true everywhere.
@jeffreyw: Why don’t you add Chris Christie and Jeb Bush while you are out there talking to the spider.
I have a complicated relationship with ethical theories: I have a strong moral compass, but I don’t believe there is any final foundation for morality and thus have never adopted a universal theory of ethics. But my test case for adopting a universal theory of ethics is whether that theory can adequately articulate this principle: Thou shalt make fresh pesto.
My football season is gonna be pretty lousy. I am originally from Columbus, Ohio. I bleed scarlet and gray. My Buckeyes are in horrible shape for a year or two. I was taught to watch football by my older brother who is a Broncos fan, so they’ve always been my pro squad. They’re um… rebuilding.
Raven (formerly stuckinred)
Go Illini, Go Dawgs!
Posted as proof I am not dead
Over the holiday I used up most of a head of garlic because the cloves were so large.
@sacrablue: One must use such power carefully lest the Elder Gods be angered.
Excuse me. Where is the football thread? Cole too nervous to post one? My Vikes are behind in the first half. This may be a good thing as they have lost every week when they’ve been ahead by twenty in the first half.
Raven (formerly stuckinred)
@asiangrrlMN: From my perch it doesn’t look like there was one yesterday either. I leave town and the place goes to shit.
@Raven (formerly stuckinred): It’s fucking disgraceful.
Last time Kay had to drop them.
Kill! Kill! KILL!!
@Raven (formerly stuckinred): Oh well. Sigh. Vikes ahead by four. As if anyone in this thread cares.
Raven (formerly stuckinred)
@asiangrrlMN: We’re landing in 20 minutes and then it should take 2 hrs to get home to see the Falcons.
I’m wondering if Cole has a severe case of blog fatigue. Especially since (I think) FYWP allows you to prefabricate a post such as a football open thread and have it appear magically at the proper time.
@Steeplejack: Yeah. I think that may be the case, Steepman. He’s two-timing his blog with Twitter! Though I don’t see him there, either.
so where is the NFL open thread? The hated steelers are playing today. Is cole in hiding ?
What do we want? NFL OPEN THREAD! When do we want it? NOW!
(Probably this is not helping, and FTFY are on in an hour)
@Jennifer: I looked! Neat!
Why can’t I play that fucking video? Stupid fucking Vimeo.
Adblock shouldn’t be blocking it, it’s just a flash vid, I have zero issues with any other video. WTF, really? Is it just that I somehow do not deserve an easy way of peeling garlic? I love garlic, c’mon now, give it!
@B W Smith: That is a cool story, whether it’s folklore or not.
Undoubtedly. That’s why he’s added 11eventy more FPers. When was the last time he pulled a “I’m wiped and got nothin'” and then reeled off 8 posts in 3 hours?
I saw this video a few days ago. I went shopping today and picked up a head of garlic to give the technique a try. Result: three peeled cloves, a couple of partly peeled cloves, and the rest still with the skin on. Additional shaking didn’t help. So that was convenient–I just needed a few cloves for dinner tonight–but either Saveur chefs are really strong or this technique doesn’t work all the time.
B W Smith
@Kristine: Thanks. My grandfather was the coolest guy I have ever known. He had a story for everything in the natural world. He also had the most compassionate soul. I am just sorry my children never knew him except what they know through me.
Ajo. That is all.
And just smash the clove with your knife.
fuck garlic, fuck NFL
yeh, i said it