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Preserving Gourmet Garlic: Freezing Garlic In Oil

| 12/26/2013 8:11:00 AM

chopped garlicIn my previous blog (Preserving Gourmet Garlic: Dehydration), I wrote about how to prolong the storage life of gourmet garlic through dehydration. Another easy way to preserve gourmet garlic is to freeze the minced cloves in oil. Freezing gourmet garlic in oil is a convenient and efficient way to retain its fresh flavor and make it more versatile for year-round culinary use. This is one of our favorite ways to save garlic, especially those cultivars such as the rocambole Russian Red, which have a shelf life of only a few months.

Using oil to coat the garlic helps reduce freezer burn. It also minimizes the odor of the garlic in your freezer, helping to prevent the pungent smell transferring to other foods (such as fruit). And because the mixture is frozen, there is no risk of botulism which can sometimes occur in garlic stored in oil at warmer temperatures. Best of all, the only extra tools you’ll need are a couple of dedicated ice-cube trays!

How to Blanch Garlic for Freezing

To make the process easier, we blanch the cloves before peeling. Blanching makes the skins more flexible and easier to remove. To blanch:

1. Place a large pot of water on the stove and bring to a boil. While the water is heating, separate the garlic into individual cloves.

2. When the water has reached a rolling boil, add the garlic to the pot. Boil the garlic for approximately 10 seconds.

3. After 10 seconds, remove the garlic from the water. Place the cloves in a large bowl and run under cold water until they are cool to the touch, approximately 3 to 5 minutes.

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