The pungent flavour of this little, unassuming bulb might not be to everyone's taste, but I really like cooking with garlic. Where I fail is in crushing it - at least that's what I learnt at an amateur cooking class I attended sometime ago, where I was told that using a garlic crusher amounted to a culinary faux pas! You are meant to crush it with a knife and then use the side of the blade to turn the crushed clove into a paste. Well, in my book that takes too long so I'm sticking to crushing gadget “technique”.
Garlic is one of those super-foods and its acclaimed contribution to our wellbeing is commonly recognised. The potential benefits of eating garlic include reducing cholesterol levels, blood pressure and risk of a heart attack, as well as increasing anti-inflammatory and antibacterial properties within the body.
- Chicago got its name from the American Indian word for the wild garlic that grew around Lake Michigan - "chicagaoua".
- The word "garlic" comes from old English - "garleac", which means “spear leek”.
- The French and the Russian diplomatic circles had a delicate issue to solve when the French astronauts joined the Soviet space programme in 1986 and insisted that their space menu includes garlic, something the Russian crew strongly objected to on grounds of poor ventilation on board of the shuttle.
- The smell of garlic can be eradicated from your hands by rubbing them on a stainless steel object.
- According to Christian mythology, when Satan vanished from the Gardens of Eden, garlic grew out of the footprint of his left foot (and the onion from the right one).
- Taoists believe that garlic enhances chi energy, whereas the ancient Indian healing system of Ayurveda describes garlic as a medicinal plant which was used to warm the body, improve blood circulation and cure digestive problems.