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The tasty, yet often offensive, herb garlic dates back more than 6,000 years in culinary history. It was so highly thought of that Egyptians worshipped garlic and placed clay images of the bulbs in the tomb of King Tutankhamen. The bulbs were so highly prized that they were even used as currency at times.
Garlic was frowned upon by cooking experts in the US until the early 20th century, where it was found almost exclusively in ethnic dishes in working-class neighborhoods. But, by 1940, America had fully embraced garlic, finally recognizing its value not only as a seasoning, but as a major ingredient in favorite recipes.
When cooking with garlic, remember that a single bulb of the pungent-tasting rhizome usually contains between 10 and 20 individual cloves of garlic. It's important that you don't confuse cloves and bulbs or your recipe could end up with more garlic than you bargained for.
As garlic cloves are cooked or baked whole, the flavor mellows into a sweet, almost nutty flavor that hardly smells at all. If you saute garlic, be careful not to burn it or the taste becomes bitter and you'll have to start over again.
When purchasing a "stinking rose" (as garlic's often called), look for bulbs that are firm with plenty of dry, paper-like covering. If the heads show any sign of sprouting, they're most likely past their prime and were probably not dried properly.
So whether it's chopped, roasted, crushed, minced or sauteed, these pungent, edible bulbs are sure to add delicious flavor to any recipe.
Thanks for the info!