What’s the first thing that comes to your mind when you think of garlic? To me, it’s a box of mints that are needed to take care of the after-effects! Also known as the ‘the stinking rose’, garlic is extensively used in Indian and French cooking. The word garlic comes from a combination of Anglo-Saxan words – ‘gar’ (spear) and ‘lac’ (plant). Sautéing garlic in butter or ghee and letting it absorb all the flavours of the spices, gives food a pungent, yet beautiful flavour.
Here are 11 unique facts that we bet you didn’t about garlic:
- China produces the most garlic in the world. At almost 46 billion pounds per year, that’s almost two-thirds of the world’s garlic production.
- It is widely believed that garlic fights off evil spirits and keeps vampires away. Time to keep some garlic under the bed I think!
- Garlic helps reduce ‘bad’ cholesterol by inhibiting enzymes from growing in liver cells.
- According to Christian mythology, when Satan left the Garden of Eden, garlic grew from his left footprint.
- The fear of garlic is called Alliumphobia.
- In ancient Greece, brides carried bouquets of garlic instead of flowers and herbs!
- There are over 300 varieties of garlic grown all over the world.
- It’s believed that Egyptian pharaohs fed their pyramid builders with garlic for strength.
- Garlic was also used as a cure for drunkenness and over-eating during the Medieval times.
- During the WWI, garlic was used to replace the depleted stocks of sulphur for treating wounded soldiers.
- The pungent flavour of garlic is due to a chemical reaction that occurs when the garlic cells are broken. This flavour intensifies right after mincing garlic.
Garlic plays an important role in Indian cooking – as a paste that’s added to curries, minced and added to gravy or sautéed to create a crackling temper for pulses. When you pick garlic at a grocery store, make sure to choose firm, tight and heavy dry bulbs. These are beautifully pungent and maximize the flavour like in our Delicious Meals.
If you know any more interesting facts about garlic, let us know in the comments below. Till then, breathe fresh! 😉