I have a dirty lit­tle secret. One of those things that foodie peo­ple mock loudly and then all their groupies join in, laugh­ing, while some of us awk­wardly chuckle as our eyes dart around, ner­vously, to see if we’ve been found.

For years, I pri­mar­ily used jarred gar­lic. And you know what? I still have a jar in my fridge.

Sure, fresh gar­lic is cheap and tastes bet­ter. But get­ting those pesky skins off each clove was mak­ing me nuts! Then my fin­gers would stink for days, no mat­ter how many times I ran cold water over my fin­gers while rub­bing them over the back of a spoon or using lemon juice. Real gar­lic only got pulled out for com­pany and jarred was good enough for us.

And then, last year, this lit­tle friend arrived in my stocking:

Sure, I’d seen these at the store before, but always thought, “Seri­ously? What a gim­mick!” I mean, come on, a rub­ber tube? What good would that going to do? I thought it was sweet that Jim tried to get me a new gad­get, even thought it wasn’t going to work. Right?

Oh boy, lit­tle rub­ber tube + fresh gar­lic = WIN! All it takes is a cou­ple of sec­onds of rock­ing and rolling on the counter and the skins just shed off. Perfecto!

But now, to mince. Again, I don’t want stinky hands. Enter:

The Gar­lic­Zoom. It looks stu­pid, but works really, really well. Between the tube and the Zoom, I have freshly minced gar­lic in under 1 minute, no joke.

Now, you may have noticed that I said that I still have a jar of gar­lic. Some­times I’m out of fresh or I’m really just that lazy. But I have to give it to these lit­tle, vampire-repellent tools of the trade. They rock.

*I just want to note that I was not paid or asked by either com­pany to pro­mote these prod­ucts. I just has a luv.

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25 Responses to garlic rehab

  1. Lauren Marie says:

    Okay, now I want one of each. I know what I want in my Christ­mas stock­ing for sure!

  2. Hope says:

    OMG! I have that gar­lic zoom thing and it did bring fresh gar­lic back into my life! I bought it at the gro­cery store, oddly enough. It work great! I even use it for fresh gin­ger too…

  3. Stephanie says:

    Awe­some! I, too, absolutely hate the sticky mess inher­ent in prepar­ing fresh gar­lic, though my boyfriend would prob­a­bly dis­own me if I started using the jarred stuff (con­fes­sion: I covertly picked up a huge gar of ginger-garlic paste for Indian cook­ing).
    To get the skins off, I just set a clove on a cut­ting board, smash it with the flat side of a knife, and pick off the out­side, and rub­bing my hands on stain­less steel gets the smell off pretty quickly right away, too — sounds weird, but it’s really worked for me! But the minc­ing kills me (and my knife-magnet fin­ger­tips). Is the Gar­lic­Zoom easy to clean? It looks high tech, and I kinda want one!

    • Kris says:

      Yes, the minc­ing is the worst. The gar­lic sticks to your hands and makes a mess!

      It’s actu­ally really easy to use. It comes apart into two pieces and is quick to wash.

  4. i love me some gad­getry. i’ll ask chan­nukah harry for these items.

  5. Seglare says:

    The Gar­lic Zoom has changed my life, too! 😉 I know a good knife-blade trick for get­ting the skins off, but I hated that my fin­gers would smell like gar­lic for days. I have a small prob­lem with the zoom not rolling very well on our wooden kitchen counter (any­one have some good tricks for this?), but it’s still a thou­sand times bet­ter than chop­ping each clove by hand.

    • Kris says:

      The zoom doesn’t always roll that well for me, but I try going in short bursts back and forth, rather than long ones. And often, I find, I’m putting too much gar­lic in it, so I have to scale back or at least mince a cou­ple of cloves and then throw the rest in.

  6. Vegannifer says:

    Awe­some gad­gets! I’ve never seen either of those. I still use jarred gar­lic — and my fair share of gar­lic pow­der. I am very pleased, though, that when I make a recipe requir­ing gar­lic in my Vita­Mix, I can just throw in the gar­lic peel and all!

    • Kris says:

      The level of lazi­ness my Vita­Mix has encour­aged is kind of sad. Like, if I would nor­mally just puree or mash some­thing but don’t want to deal with peel­ing or chop­ping it, I just throw it in Edgar (my Vita­Mix) to just be done with it.

  7. Amanda Nobile says:

    Those two items look great! And I would totally pur­chase them right now if I hadn’t come across the Pam­pered Chef Gar­lic Press a few years ago at a friend’s party:

    You just put the unpeeled gar­lic in the hop­per and it mag­i­cally only presses/minces the gar­lic, leav­ing the skin in the press. Super freaky, but super neat. The press comes with a lit­tle tool to scoot the skin out, so no stinky fingers!

    I do have to admit, though, that I go for the pow­dered gar­lic (I know, gasp, for shame) when I get a lit­tle lazy :)

    • Kris says:

      I used to have one of those presses, too, but was tired of dig­ging the skin out of the lit­tle holes. It’s cool that one comes with a tool to help!

  8. Josiane says:

    It’s great that Jim’s gift has set you on the path to mak­ing friends with fresh gar­lic!
    The Gar­lic­Zoom looks cool (design-wise), but they lose me when they say “Cleanup is easy, since the chop­per is top-rack dish­washer safe” — that leaves me with the impres­sion that it will be a pain to wash by hand…

  9. Leigh says:

    I have a gar­lic press that’s messy and annoy­ing, so I still use the jar of minced (gasp!). The Gar­lic Zoom sounds inter­est­ing, though.

  10. Andrea says:

    I have one of those nifty zooms, too, but some­times I find it eas­ier to grate the gar­lic on my microplane zester. But truth­fully, some­times I like just minc­ing it up with a chefs knife.

  11. Mo says:

    I have a generic slap chop, which I love because I hate minc­ing tons of gar­lic at once, but I do love the fresh stuff. The way I get the gar­lic smell off is to rinse with warm water right after I’m done chopping.

  12. Courtney says:

    OMG–I NEED a gar­lic zoom! I am fine with get­ting the peel/skin/paper off the gar­lic, but minc­ing? My fin­gers reek for days! I hate it! I use gar­lic pow­der some­times just to get out of mincing…shameful, I know. I am embarrassed!


  13. mollyjwalter says:

    I use a microplane grater as well. And for some rea­son peel­ing gar­lic doesn’t frus­trate me — I just roll it on the counter top under­neath of the cut­ting board for a few sec­ond. Presto!

    PS — I am laugh­ing and point­ing at your jarred gar­lic, but you can laugh and point at my canned legumes. :)

  14. threeongrove says:

    Don’t for­get that by rub­bing your gar­l­icy hands on stain­less steel all the smell comes off! It is totally amaz­ing! I love my gar­lic press, but I have always wanted to try the tube!

  15. Jojo says:

    I am totally get­ting one of those tubes, I have a good sturdy gar­lic prrss but peel­ing gar­lic makes me irra­tionally angry — espe­cially when a recipe calls for a lot of garlic.

  16. So weird, I was actu­ally talk­ing about the lit­tle tube roller thing ear­lier tonight with one of my friends while peel­ing about 10 cloves of gar­lic. I’m glad to know it actu­ally works, but I’m def­i­nitely going to pick on up now!

  17. Lacey says:

    I lit­er­ally chuck­led out loud see­ing that sec­ond con­trap­tion. I don’t seem to have a prob­lem with the gar­lic smell lin­ger­ing on my hands; and i’m one of those peo­ple who just smashes gar­lic with a big knife until i hear the skin ‘crack’ then peel it off. Dur­ing the sum­mer; fresh gar­lic is sooo cheap (4 for $1 bulbs? yes please); but in the winter..at $5.99 per lb; i use way less gar­lic in the winter.