garlic with garlic press

Cooking with Garlic

peeled garlic

When cooking with garlic, did you know that if you press or chop garlic and let it rest for 10 minutes before cooking that it significantly increases many of its health benefits?

Garlic is part of the allium family of foods. Other allium foods are onions, shallots, leeks, shallots and chives.

People around the world have been using garlic for medicinal purposes. It was used to treat infected wounds, restore appetites, boost energy, repel scorpions, soothe bee stings, relieve colic and croup, lower fevers and as a tonic for colds, sore throats and earaches.

Garlic is an “anti” food. Garlic awesome properties include antioxidant, antibacterial, antiviral, anticlogging and anticancer!

Two compounds in garlic are inactive until they are combined during pressing, chopping or chewing. One of these compounds is a heat-sensitive enzyme called alliinase. When alliinase comes in contact with alliin, they form allicin. But if the garlic is minced and immediately heated, the enzyme is destroyed. However, if you mash or chop it and set is aside for 10 minutes, allicin is created and the heat-sensitive enzyme is no longer needed.

So the next time you make a dish that uses garlic, start by mashing or slicing it first. Then set it aside while you prepare the other ingredients. Be sure that you’ve waited 10 minutes before cooking, baking or microwaving it.


*Information in this post was found in “Eating on the Wild Side” by Jo Robinson.


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