Garlic- My Favorite Culinary Herb

1:35 PM Posted by Jo Pedranti



Garlic is one of my favorite culinary herbs. Not only does it taste wonderfully, but it has powerful healing powers as well. Research has shown that garlic can help immunity and reduce high levels of blood sugar.

I love garlic, and I don't think I'm exaggerating when I say I use it almost daily in one way or another. One of my favorite ways to enjoy garlic is to chop the top off the bulb, sprinkle some olive oil on top and  roast the whole garlic bulb in the oven. 

I was positively surprised when I found out about garlic's powerful healing properties a few years ago. People have been aware of garlic's healing power for thousands of years. Historically it has been used to treat everything from infections and wounds to digestive problems. When the Russian soldiers ran out of penicillin during World War II, they requested garlic cloves for their wounds.

According to Steven Horne, garlic is probably one of the most valuable natural alternative to antibiotics available. An anti-microbial and pungent compound called allicin is released when the garlic is crushed. Horne says garlic is anti-viral and as such is helpful for colds and congestion. He also says garlic is helpful in combating parasitic and fungal infections. 

Research has shown that garlic can help immunity and reduce high levels of blood sugar. Studies also show that garlic lowers cholesterol and thins the blood, which may help prevent heart disease, stroke and high blood pressure. 
You want to keep in mind that the compound allicin degrades within 24 hours so the powdered garlic does not contain the same healing power as the fresh garlic. 

When my children were small and had ear problems I soaked crushed garlic in olive oil. I dropped a few drops in their ears. Sometimes I poked a hole in a garlic capsule instead. I improved lymphatic drainage by rubbing some garlic oil down the neck.

When my children became older, I cut a clove of garlic and put a little olive oil on it and put it outside the ear like an hearing aid. I did this to stimulate lymphatic drainage, and to relieve the pain and infection as well. I also like to make the powerful immune boosting home remedy Master Tonic, which contains plenty of garlic.


Here are some ways I use garlic in cooking:

I'll use plenty of garlic for my Herb Marinated Braised Lamb Shanks recipe:


I use plenty of garlic when I roast vegetables in the oven. I like to mix chopped or pressed garlic with virgin olive oil and herbs de Provence, and I use this mixed often on roasted vegetables.  Here is my yummy Roasted Sweet Potaoes with Rosemary dish


I also mix chopped garlic with onion and saute until soft and use for things like soup. 
Here is my yummy soup:


I chop garlic and mix it with balsamic vinegar, olive oil, add a couple of spoons of Dijon mustard and shake it all up. I use this as a marinade for meat, salad dressing, and for my cole slaw.
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