The Easiest Way to Keep Your Garlic From Sprouting

The Easiest Way to Keep Your Garlic From Sprouting
Photo: Anna Lohachova, Shutterstock

It seems that no matter where I buy my garlic, at least half of my haul is always on the verge of sprouting. As the germ (the little sprout thing in the middle) ages and turns green, it becomes bitter, and while I am capable of removing it, it’s an extra step I like to avoid. Luckily, freezing your garlic stops the germ in its annoying little tracks.

You can pop the whole bulb in the freezer, or separate it into individual, peeled cloves and store them in a little plastic bag. (You can also leave them unpeeled as frozen garlic is easier to peel than fresh.) Freezing the garlic will soften it, but this is only an issue if you like to eat your garlic in raw, crisp slices (and most people don’t). The flavour will remain potent, and that’s the most important part.

If you want to take the prep even further, you can puree it in a food processor with just enough oil to create a paste, then flash freeze little mounds of that paste on a parchment-lined baking sheet. Once the garlic mounds have frozen solid, transfer them to a freezer bag, then grab ‘em when you need ‘em. (Storing garlic in oil at this temperature also prevents botulism from developing — just don’t let it set out at room temperature once it’s thawed.)

If you don’t want to get oil involved, you can chop the garlic finely, then stuff it in a small freezer bag and freeze it flat in a single layer. Once it’s frozen, you can break it off as you need it. You can also slice it and flash freeze the slices, and then store those in a little freezer bag. Pretty much any form of garlic can be frozen, is what I’m saying, so pick your favourite and go wild.

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