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Lou & Lucy’s Leftovers: Garlic

*Lou Groccia and Lucy Pickett, the Gazette’s self-described food experts, can’t stop chewing the fat.*

“Garlic Is As Good As Ten Mothers.” True enough.

Actually, that’s the name of a film by documentary filmmaker Les Blank, who died recently. If you are a foodie and haven’t seen this documentary you should. It came out in the early ’80s and made quite an impression on my posse and me.

It has everything you ever needed to know about garlic and then some. The history, the culture, the festivals, growing, eating, cooking with it and more.

Granted, I haven’t seen the film in many years and it may be a bit dated, but at the time, to us it was the Holy Grail. We had parties where the film was the theme. Everyone would bring a dish made with garlic, right down to the dessert. Garlic would be cooking the entire time. It was a garlic extravaganza.

They don’t call it the stinking rose for nothing. The house reeked and so did we and we loved it.

Blank made some other films: “In Heaven There Is No Beer,” “Gap Toothed Women,” “Always For Pleasure,” and a score of others. I know I watched some of the others, but “Garlic Is As Good As Ten Mothers” is the one that has stayed in my brain — I’ve watched it at least five times. So, if you like garlic as much as I do, give this movie a try. Plan a party around it, but don’t forget the garlic.

While on the subject of garlic: I caught the so-called latest, greatest way to peel garlic on a Yahoo video. People are always trying to come up with the best and fastest way to accomplish this task. My personal favorite is using my fist on the flat side of a knife. Boom, splat, done. Peel comes off. The chef on the videos’ way was to take two identical small stainless bowls with a rim that fit together and put the garlic cloves in and shake like hell. (Can I say that? Hell, I mean.) I haven’t tried it yet, mainly because I don’t have the right bowls. All I can think is, I would then have two garlicky bowls to wash instead of one knife. If you try this, let me know how it works.

Just remember garlic rules!

— Lucy

Don’t bother with the bowls. I saw the same video and it doesn’t work. Fist on the flat side of an 8-inch chef’s knife. Just don’t use your shiv. Keep that for the really important stuff.

— Lou

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