Fresh garlic season is winding down, which means these beautiful bulbs of new purple stripe, ceramic, and elephant garlic out in the garden or at the farmer’s market will start decreasing soon.
Whether you have grown or bought too much at the grocery store from many fresh white garlic suppliers, here is how to store your supply to make it last the longest.
At Room Temperature
How to Grow Garlic
When shopping for produce, permit any bulbs that appear soft or spoiled or have started sprouting. (If it is a wet spring and summer, the garlic cloves may begin to grow right away and split the bulb apart before harvest). You can look for undamaged garlic cloves for long-term storage.
Toaster Time Machine 1940s
The easiest way to store white garlic at home is in mesh bags or roughly woven baskets. White garlic with flexible tops is ready into pretty braids to hang. But fresh garlic with a stiff central stalk — often called hard neck garlic — will shatter if you stab to braid it.
Garlic retains longest when stored at 60 to 65 degrees and in modest humidity. It is what makes keeping fresh white garlic throughout the winter so hard. Moreover, heated winter homes tend to be very dry — so dry that white garlic cloves will shrivel up and turn rock-like inside the papery skins after a month or two. (If that happens to yours, toss them, skins and all, into your next set of vegetable stock).
Store white garlic under an unglazed clay flower pot in a cupboard, making a small humidor without cutting off air circulation, leading to putrefaction.
Do you lack storage space for an upside-down flower pot? There are some other easy ways to store white garlic that will not undermine its flavor.
In your Fridge
Veggie drawer in your fridge
Storing white garlic in the crisper drawer of your fridge takes care of the moisture problem. Just be attentive that once fresh garlic has been in the cold, it will start budding within days after having it at room temperature. (it is why garlic from the store often buds.)
Therefore, if you store it this way, keep it in your fridge until ready to use it. If your fresh garlic does sprout, grow some tasty white garlic greens by popping the bulb in a small container of soil on your windowsill.
Leftover peeled garlic cloves or chopped garlic will keep in your fridge for a couple of weeks in a small, airtight container, but this method is not a good choice for long-term storage. The minced white garlic you can purchase in jars from fresh white garlic suppliers has been acidified to keep it secure and usable for months, but you have never found any tested recipes for safely doing it at home.
In your Freezer
Stacked ice cube trays in a freezer
You can freeze fresh garlic, though some people think frozen garlic is not as good as new. The fastest way to prep it for freezer storage is to put the peeled garlic cloves into your food processor or blender with a bit of water, pulse until they are evenly crushed. And then, freeze the garlic puree in ice cube trays or spread it thinly on a silicone sheet. After frozen, store the garlic cubes or pieces in an airtight container.