Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Back to Basics - Garlic Power!

Last year I began to use garlic cloves in cooking various meals, finding it very easy to use. Flattening the clove with my knife loosens up the skin, and after removing it I can dice up the garlic and add it to my meat or vegetables, and it smells awesome! Previously I've used garlic salts or powders, and still do use them from time to time, depending on what I'm cooking up. The other day, a blogger friend alerted me to the fact that when she looked for garlic powder in the grocery store, every kind she picked up was made in CHINA!

WHAT?!?! I could hardly believe this - no one in the USA is qualified to make garlic powder? That just isn't right! I researched it briefly on the internet, and even though garlic is grown in the United States, the stores seem to only stock the biggest name brands, or the most economically priced brands. China is the largest producer and exporter of garlic products.

I did find a site for buying California grown garlic powders and products online. Click HERE to visit and browse. It is called Garlic Festival, and indeed, it IS a festival! It is reported that the entire town smells of wonderful garlics, and I'm sure every product you've ever dreamed of, and some you never THOUGHT OF, can be found at their online shop! When you live in America, buy American. This is important especially now, during the current recession.

If you prefer to "grow your own", here's a short blurb I found somewhere (I forgot to capture the link - sorry!) on making garlic powder to store and use at home:

When great garlic begins to go soft in storage, it's time to make garlic powder. To prepare this multipurpose seasoning from scratch, first peel the garlic cloves. Then cut them into thin slices and put in a dry pan. Place the pan in a 150 degree oven to dry the garlic, turning the slices often. Grind the dried slices in a blender, then sift the material through a strainer to separate the chunks from the finer powder. (The chunks taste great on pizza.) Use your homemade powder on any food that can benefit from a concentrated shot of garlic flavor. Store the chunks or garlic powder in airtight jars kept in a cool place, or freeze for long-term storage.
I heard garlic usage may reduce blood pressure. If a person is afraid of bad breath, garlic capsules are available in health food stores. Garlic is ALSO great as a natural dewormer for chickens - fed with chopped pumpkin seeds, the crushed and chopped garlic can be fed tossed with cottage cheese and bread crumbs - my hens gobble it right up!


Angela said...

Great post Monica! You are on top of it girl! I'll be making my own garlic powder! It sounds like it shouldn't be to hard to do! I did try to grow it about 2 years ago but had no luck with it. I am going to give it another try this year!

Garlic is also a natural antibiotic! I take ordorless garlic capsules every night! I can tell a big difference in the way I feel if I don't take them!

Thanks so much for researching this! All of us will benefit from this post!


Barbara Jean said...

Who would have ever known all that bout garlic.
very informational post.

thanks girl!!


barbara jean

Carmen C. said...

Garlic powder comes from CHINA?! Yikes, I won't be buying it anymore, seems like everything from China anymore ends up on recall, thanks for this heads up!

Marjorie (Molly) Smith said...

Well I can tell you right now, no self respecting LA woman would ever use garlic powder, lol...shhhhh, don't tell anyone but sometimes I do. hump, not any more, I try not to buy anything made in China..
If you check it out most of our apple juice comes from China and us with apples grown all over stupid.
My DH has taken garlic tablets for his BP for years also good for heart burn and acid reflux.
Thanks for the info.
Have a great day, I will have to try making my own fresh garlic powder.

^..^Corgidogmama said...

Monica, you are so full of it!
I'm talking about good information!!!
Your research astounds me.
That dang ol' China has their hands in everything, don't they? They've infiltrated us in every aspect of our lives, even our stinkin' (pun) garlic powder.
Who knew that hens ate garlic too. Cooking would be so bland without it.
I've been trying to comment for days on your site, but our computer freezes. I have to hurry up and get this done before it happens again. It's on its way out we fear. Oh well. The tv has been broadcasting only in black and white since Christmas, and we're waiting for that to die too. Jim bought it in '92.
Makes me feel like I'm lost in the sixties again!

Olde Dame Penniwig said...

Oh, and garlic is so good for one's BREATH, too!


I have gotten away from using the powder -- and use the ROASTED MINCED in a little jar -- easier to get U.S. made that way -- I do not really trust poor China yet...

ocmist said...

I lived in San Jose while going to Bible College and Gilroy, the Garlic Capital of the US (that's their terms) DOES have a wonderful festival every year and is real close to San Jose. The whole area smells of it when you drive through on the highway. They sell it all over CA in the stores. I TOTALLY love it and it IS one of the best things in a bunch of ways, that you can use for health.

Thanks for telling us about how to make the powder. I usually buy the HUGE bottles of it from Costco cause I use so much ALL the time, and not just the powder... I use the minced and crushed and raw, and my favorite is pickled. I could eat that all day, but it does thin the blood (much like the low dose asprin).

Were you the one I told about pickling it? Linda