The Stinking Rose

by Lisa Rosen on September 27, 2011

I can’t remember how I stumbled across this video earlier today, but it immediately piqued my interest.  It also made me laugh (I don’t know that it was supposed to, but I can’t help it–apparently garlic cracks me up), which made it doubly appealing.

So of course I ran right out and bought some garlic.  I usually buy the fresh, pre-peeled kind at Whole Foods (yes, I know–I’m a princess), but it’s always good to have a back-up plan.  And I hate (hate HATE) peeling those sticky little cloves, picking off the last stubborn shreds of papery skin.  What a pain.

I waited for Delaney to get home to test it for me (again–I’m a princess; I might also have–as Lee said–totally Tom Sawyer-ed her).  Besides, I didn’t want to irritate my knitting injury (yes, I have a knitting injury.  What?)  She did the first trial, but then I couldn’t resist taking a turn.

Our assessment:  that guy in the video must be a lot stronger than he looks!  The first tricky bit was smashing the head open–Delaney took about four tries; I got smart and used the bottom of a heavy pot.  Watch out for flying garlic.

The second tricky bit was–it takes a lot longer than ten seconds (and we’re not exactly 90-pound weaklings, either one of us).  I can claim handicap (what with the knitting injury–in my defense, I do think the initial tendonitis flare was a result of doing too many push-ups.  Stop laughing.), but Delaney is fairly strong–she is a softball player, after all.  Either garlic skins are a lot more tenacious than that video would lead one to believe (my theory), or I had somehow purchased defective garlic (Delaney’s theory).

In summary:  it works, but it’s not as quick and easy as it looks.  If you need a whole head of garlic peeled in a hurry, it’s probably quicker than picking at it with your fingernails, but be prepared for a good shoulder workout (and tiny bits of garlic parchment floating around your kitchen).

It might, however, be a useful diversion if you need to exhaust small children while you’re making dinner.  On the other hand, requiring said children to do the one-clove-at-a-time version of garlic peeling might take even longer.

Now I just have to figure out what to do with all that garlic.

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