The Life and Times of Garlic
1. Garlic Through the Ages,
2. From Crop to Plate,
3. Garlics of the World,
4. Garlic and Your Health,
5. Growing Garlic at Home,
The Tastes and Pleasures of Garlic
6. Garlic Tips, Tricks, and Tools,
7. Cooking With Garlic,
Metric Conversion Tables,
There are countless forms of earthly pleasures and innumerable objects onto which we can focus our desires. They range from the quiet pleasures of hearth and home to the more exotic enchantments of faraway lands, lavish surroundings, and beautiful loves. As most of us suspect, and the more adventurous know, danger often lurks behind the allures of passion. This danger, be it to our emotional, financial, spiritual, or physical well being, is not just an element of romantic novels, but is very real, indeed. In my life, I consider myself quite lucky because not only have I had the opportunity to experience the sublime bliss of unabashed passion, I have managed to do so in a totally nondestructive way. In fact, my little obsession seems to have done me quite well.
Like the diaries of writer Anaïs Nin, this book is the chronicle of my passion. In Part One, “The Life and Times of Garlic,” I will share with you stories of my beloved. In Chapter 1, “Garlic Through the Ages,” we will explore some of the folklore and history surrounding garlic. You will learn how people before me loved garlic and how others have passionately disdained the object of my desires.
In Chapter 2, “From Crop to Plate,” we will take a look at what garlic is in the botanical sense and how this deceptively simple bulb goes from being a crop in some farmer’s field to a pleasure on your plate. It is in this chapter that you will learn how to choose the freshest and best garlic for all of your culinary needs.
Garlic has definitely lived the life of a rogue, being both loved and hated in almost every culinary tradition. In Chapter 3, “Garlics of the World,” you will learn about the characteristics of the many varieties of garlic and discover the origins, when known, of the different types.
Every enjoyment eventually grows shallow when all it has to offer is itself. Take ice cream, for example. Ice cream is quite a delight with the first few bites, but with serious indulgence, it becomes a foe, not a friend. Ice cream can make you fat, raise your cholesterol, and, God forbid, create excess mucus and other unpleasant reactions if you are lactose intolerant. Garlic would never do that to you. In spite of its reputation as a stinker, it is steadfast and true. Although it offers culinary delights that can rival those of any food on this planet, garlic has been used throughout history to cure almost every ill known to man and woman. In Chapter 4, “Garlic and Your Health,” we will discuss the healing powers and health benefits attributed to garlic.
In Chapter 5, “Growing Garlic at Home,” I will share with you how to raise delicious, gourmet garlic right in your own backyard or balcony. Go ahead and take the risk. It’s easier than you might think.
In Part Two of this book, we will indulge in “The Tastes and Pleasures of Garlic.” In Chapter 6, “Garlic Tips, Tricks, and Tools,” we will discuss cooking techniques you may wish to try and special tools you may wish to own. In Chapter 7, “Cooking With Garlic,” the real fun will begin, with luscious, healthful recipes that will allow you to indulge in your own garlic fantasies to your heart’s content. What does health have to do with passion? Without health there can be no passion, and with these recipes you can have both.
Following the recipes, you will find a resource list showing where to buy gourmet garlics and garlic lovers’ paraphernalia. Then finally, as with all good things, this book must end, but you will take with you some new knowledge, perhaps improved health, and hopefully, a love for this marvelous plant that is affectionately called “the stinking rose.”