April is National Garlic Month and this weekend is a great time to lend appreciation to this aromatic and flavorful herb. (Incidentally, garlic is also considered a vegetable!)
It’s true, garlic has a pungent flavor that makes some people skittish. It occurs when the garlic cells are broken. A chemical reaction produces the strong aroma and taste. Mince your garlic and you’ll be rewarded with very intense flavor (which is why minced garlic is so delicious in your favorite beef dishes!). But don’t worry, you don’t have to eat it raw! One of the best ways I’ve found to include garlic at grill time is by marinating the meat.
Beer-marinated flank steak is a favorite recipe. It combines Guinness beer, garlic, onion and jalapenos for a sizzlin’ steak that will heat up your weekend. Flank steak is very flavorful on its own, but marinated in a delicious and spicy sauce for several hours? Yum!
If the thought of ‘garlic breath’ makes you wary of this delectable addition, add a slice of lemon to your water glass. A sip of lemon juice or a bite into the pucker-producing fruit will quickly cure you. You can also prevent bad breath by sipping milk or eating parsley!
Here are some fun garlic facts you may not know from the National Garlic Day folks:
- Garlic is a member of the lily family, closely related to onions, leeks and chives.
- Garlic contains about four calories per clove
- Remove garlic smell from your hands by running them under cold water while rubbing a stainless steel object like a spoon. (Really, it works!)
- Regarded as a force of both good and evil, the Egyptians are said to have fed the herb to workers building the Great Pyramid of Giza because they believed it boosted their stamina.
- In the Middle Ages, plague-phobic Europeans ate whole cloves of garlic to fight off the scourge known as the Black Death.
Did I convince you to love garlic? If not, maybe one of these tasty recipes will. Enjoy!
And don’t miss this fantastic trick from the folks at Saveur!