Cloves of garlic with knife
How To Get The Most, Or The Least, Flavor From Fresh Garlic
Garlic can enhance any savory meal, but sometimes its flavor winds up too strong or too weak in the final dish. Follow these tips to get the right amount of flavor for your needs.
Garlic’s smell and flavor come from the chemical compound allicin. The more the garlic is broken down by cutting, smashing, or cooking, the more allicin is released.
If you want a mellow garlic flavor, break down the garlic cloves very slightly by chopping them just a few times. For a medium-strength flavor, give it a thorough, rough chop.
On the other hand, if you want a strong garlic flavor, you’ll want to break down each clove as much as possible by thinly shredding it with a microplane or grater.
If you’re not sure how strong you want your garlic, try adding a roughly chopped clove or two to your dish for a balanced flavor. It's also possible to temper the garlic.
If you want a strong garlic flavor without too much of an intense afterbite, chop or grate the garlic and soak it in an acid like vinegar or lemon juice to temper it before use.