Wednesday, 23 March 2011

March of the Tools: no peeling necessary


This March of the Tools post isn't actually related to sewing at all (but that's officially allowed, because I've seen Heather herself featuring silicone spatulas), but when I found out what my ten-year-old humble garlic press was capable of last year I've been delighted ever since and so wanted to share this discovery with you. Last year, I was browsing Jamie Oliver's cookware and noticed that his garlic press was marketed with the claim that you didn't need to peel the garlic before crushing it in his press. This seemed like such a jolly good thing that I began lusting after his garlic press thinking of how liberating it would be to never be cursed with garlic scented fingers again. But then I began studying his press and realised that it looked identical to my own...and so that night I tried pressing the garlic without peeling it first and made a miraculous discovery: any good quality garlic press will extrude the garlic from the skin without peeling it first!

Place the unpeeled garlic in the press
Squeeze down until the all the garlic has made a successful bid for freedom

....and admire the empty skin left inside the press, before removing with a knife to avoid finger contamination.
There's every possibility that you may all reply that you've been crushing garlic this way for years...in which case I've arrived obscenely late the garlic crushing party, but along the way I did find out another trick: if you run your hands over your stainless steel kitchen tap after touching garlic the steel removes any odour from your fingers. But tap fondling always made me feel a bit freaky...it's just better this way.

Florence x

17 comments:

  1. I must admit I buy jars of ready chopped garlic because my husband isn't a garlic lover, so I can use less than one clove without waste.
    To get rid of onion smells on my hands I rub them on the stainless steel sink - which doesn't look as bad as fondling the tap!

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  2. Ladies, no more tap or sink fondling! You can actually buy stainless steel soaps!

    http://www.lakeland.co.uk/fresh-hands/F/product/10377

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  3. Wow - well I just learnt 2 things :) My garlic crusher is the same as yours - so I can't wait to try not peeling the garlic. Will have to rub the sink/tap next time too. Yay - no more garlicky fingers :D Thanks!

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  4. I have to confess that I rushed into town on Friday to buy a violet Frixion pen after googling and discovering that Rymans sell them. My 10 year old wanted one too after seeing mine and insisted that we went and bought one straight away. I haven't tried it on fabric yet but I have spent lots of time writing things and rubbing them out and it is very useful for homework! I'm looking forward to the rest of your tools posts but right now I am off to try out my garlic press!

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  5. I had thought about how wonderful it would be to not peel my garlic before pressing, but never tried. Tonight, all of that will change! I shall press my garlic whole!

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  6. Hahaha--tap fondling. This made me laugh :)

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  7. Can't wait to try both the crushing and the fondling!

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  8. I totally didn't know that you didn't have to peel with a normal garlic crusher either - I too had imagined that Jamie's crusher was a superior being! I may have to experiment with mine later...

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  9. Yes, been doing so for years with my Xylix ;) how funny that so many people are having a revelatory moment. How come I always just put the bulb in anyway skin on? Maybe my mum did it that way?? I don't know! And I've been rubbing my hands with my steel soap from lakeland which those not in the know put into the plug hole when they washup.

    Florence you have to try an amaze brush - my latest household discovery. I got it at the craft show and it is FANTASTIC!!!

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  10. I think I did know about the garlic trick but I always forget and set to to peel. But I thought the thing with stainless steel and smells was some sort of alchemy - Now I'm certainly going to try that...

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  11. Having used both I can say the Zyliss is superior to Jamie's. Hurrah for simple pleasures and excellent design :)

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  12. Little Blue Mouse - why not chop/crush your own and put it in a little jar of olive oil in the fridge?

    I have a stainless steel 'soap' that my dad gave me as a present a few years ago. I'm highly amused at the thought of all you people rubbing taps and sinks. I don't think you need to buy the 'soap' (not soap at all, just a soap-shaped piece of steel), but how about using a stainless steel spoon or something?

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  13. I remember having the same revelation: my cooking life changed for ever! Shortly afterwards, I realised that the mysterious blue thingummy jiggy that accompanied my press could be used to clean out the press without the need to get garlicky fingers and my life got even better.

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  14. Nina, I can't believe that you think spoon stroking is superior to and more respectable than tap fondling!

    I'm so delighted that so many are going to venture into finger-free garlic pressing tonight. And that's interesting about the Jamie Oliver press, as I had found his julienne peeler to be so awful that it has ended up in the bin.

    Amy....I have been watching awful commercials in the hope that I can find out where to buy an Amaze brush and what I will use it for...what are you using yours for?

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  15. So I just tried crushing non-peeled garlic in my crusher, and, as you said-it worked! A revelation!
    Thanks for the tip, and gorgeous blog!

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  16. I find garlic easy to peel - I just chop the very end tip off, then I score through the skin with a little knife and it comes off easily. I then chop it into tiny pieces in the same way I would an onion (not cutting right through to the end so it all stays together). Takes seconds, and no waste. A long time ago I had a crusher - more washing up and the juices are squeezed out and wasted.

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  17. I have this garlic crusher too and probably for at least as long as yours - isn't it fab? During a move our stuff was in storage for a time and fighting with other presses where bits of the thing come apart and so on was intensely annoying knowing my own one was sitting in a box (somewhere!) just waiting to be helpful again! Love it!

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I now tend to reply within the comments section, so please do check back if you've asked a question or wish to chat.

Florence x