READER QUESTION: How do you feel about using chopped garlic from the grocery store? Cooks on TV don’t appear to ever use it?

There was a time when I would’ve said, “Never use pre-chopped garlic.” That time was before I made 3 meals a day, 7 days a week for a family of four, for more than a decade and counting. And also pre-Covid when my dad came by for dinner 4 times a week, and lunch, I would cook for him too. (Dad’s fine by the way, just social distancing.)

Fresh garlic, like any whole, raw ingredient in the kitchen, is less expensive than prepared counterparts, more environmentally friendly (no containers, no processing), and provides more opportunities in the kitchen. You can roast it whole, make some garlic bread, grate it raw into a zesty sauce, or fry it up to make a crispy, crunchy topping for pasta. For all these reasons, fresh is best.


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