Psst... We're working on the next generation of Chowhound! View >
HOME > Chowhound > Home Cooking >
Sep 10, 2010 11:17 AM

Storing of peeled garlic cloves?

I confess to using garlic powder and jarred garlic (TJ's crushed garlic, which I prefer to supermarket jars of minced). Fresh garlic tastes too sharp and hot for me, and I dislike the way the skins stick to my fingers when I peel the cloves. Still, I always feel a bit unworthy, so a couple of weeks ago I bought peeled garlic cloves, which came in a plastic deli-type container, displayed in the produce section of the supermarket. Clearly they buy it in larger aizes and repackage into pint containers. I put the unopened container into the produce drawer in my refrigerator. A day later, the fridge reeked of garlic. I transferred the cloves to a glass jar with a metal lid, which I tightened well, and put it back in the same spot. The fridge continued to stink. I figured that might still be from the plastic container and hoped it would dissipate in time. Two weeks went by - I only used a few of the cloves in cooking. The smell diminished but was still there. Finally yesterday I slowly pan-roasted all the garlic (in olive oil), put them back into the jar, and refrigerated them. Today the smell is almost gone. I will have to freeze some of it, since I won't use it up fast enough. The TJ's crushed garlic (glass jar, metal lid) never smells up the fridge.

'Hounds, if you buy peeled garlic, how do you store it?

  1. Click to Upload a photo (10 MB limit)
  1. My Korean cousing-in-law buys them that way at the Korean grocery store in San Jose (what a paradise! Makes the fish counter at Safeway look like a 7-11). When she gets them home she runs them through the food processor slicer and bags them into those quart-sized ziplocs and puts them in the freezer. She says she goes through about a bag a week. :-) You could use the snack size if you don't use as much as she does. Personally, I would put the little bags into a gallon size freezer bag.

    1. You could keep them in a 8 - 12 oz mason jar. The small ones like for jelly. Use a foodsaver jar sealer to suck all the air out of the jar. Should last a long time in the fridge.

      You already thought of covering them in olive oil in a jar. Would infuse the olive oil too.... win win.

      You could keep them dry and get a garlic press. Just remove the dry papery skin. every thing else goes in the press. All the skin will remain in the garlic press. Then just wash it out under the faucet.

      2 Replies
      1. re: Hank Hanover

        I am not covering them in olive oil since I do not want botulism. I cooked them in a small amount of olive oil and as mentioned, will freeze them (to avoid botulism). They are already in a tightly sealed glass jar, which while they were raw did not contain the smell. I no longer buy whole heads of garlic because whether they were kept at room temp or in the fridge, I never used them fast enough to prevent spoilage.

        I don't use my garlic press because crushed garlic has more bite than sliced or whole.

        Now that I think of it, it's almost as odd that whole heads didn't stink up the refrigerator as it is that the glass jar didn't contain the smell of the peeled cloves. I wonder if pre-peeled cloves are treated with something that makes them smellier. .

        1. re: Hank Hanover

          Use a foodsaver jar sealer to suck all the air out of the jar. Should last a long time in the fridge.

          NO, NO, NO!!!! DO NOT VACUUM SEAL THEM!!! EVER!!! Garlic is one of those things that can harbor botulism spores, and the grow in an oxygen-free environment. FoodSaver specifically says to never vacuum seal uncooked garlic, or mushrooms.

        2. I purchased some once when my grocer was out of fresh. I wrapped them in wax paper and inserted the bundle in one of the bags which the gizmo sucks the air out of (not foodsaver, the one that stopped making the bags this past year). Worked well, no odor!

          1. NEVER, EVER vacuum seal raw garlic due to the botulism risk. See my post up-thread. Sorry for the repeat, but it is that important.

            1 Reply
            1. re: al b. darned

              Good to know - it is important! The type I purchased had several little bags which had been vacuum sealed, so as I opened them and used a few I went with that route to store the leftovers. Could they have been treated with something which allowed for the initial vacuum seal?

              Either way, the flavor was different from fresh so I probably won't purchase again unless it is the only garlic option.