18 Jul Garlic (Storage + Cooking Tips)
Throughout the season, garlic will appear in slightly different forms.
Early in the spring, garlic is harvested before it develops separate cloves. Green garlic, as it is called, has a fresher, milder flavor than garlic you find at the grocery store, and you can use the entire plant from the bulb up to the stalk. Wrap green garlic in a damp paper towel and store in a plastic bag or airtight container in the refrigerator.
Fresh garlic, or new garlic, is garlic that is harvested in the late spring or early summer, after it has developed a bulb but has not yet been dried. Fresh garlic will sometimes have a pink or purple tinge to it. Like green garlic, it should be stored in the refrigerator because it hasn’t yet been cured. You can use fresh garlic the same way you would normally use cured garlic, but it too will have a slightly milder flavor.
Cured garlic, similar to what you’d find at the grocery store, is garlic that has been harvested at maturity (usually mid-summer) and set out to cure. During the curing process, the garlic develops an outer layer that protects the individual cloves, so it has a much longer shelf life than green or fresh garlic. Cured garlic can be stored at room temperature (out of direct sunlight) and will keep for long periods of time. It has a stronger flavor than green or fresh garlic because the oils have had a chance to settle in the cloves.
Garlic is a flavorful addition to almost anything, and green or fresh garlic can easily be used in place of dried garlic. Try roasting with other seasonal vegetables, blending into a sauce or soup, or adding to a flavorful stir fry.
Garlic can easily be frozen for quick use in future recipes. Freeze the cloves whole to remove as needed or mince first and freeze in a freezer-safe container or plastic bag.