Saturday, January 29, 2011

A Garlic Phenomenon

Public Service Announcement: For all you manly men who read this, you may not find the following topic so, uh, suited to your masculine interests.  However, I promise, if you bear with me all the way to the end, you'll hit the jackpot with a great gift idea that I guarantee will win you points with the Wifey.  Or the Girly if you're not married.  Or the Mommy if you don't have a Girly.  Or a combination of the three...Wifey and Mommy or Girly and Mommy of course and most certainly not Wifey and Girly.  Shame on you.

Okay, cue today's post.

One of my favorite things about Germany is the availability of fresh just about everything. Fresh vegetables, fresh fruit, fresh meat, fresh fish...okay, not so much fresh fish.

Unless you're up north I suppose.  Or you go to my favorite restaurant in the whole wide world, Filippo's.

Very Important Tip: There's not a whole lot going on in Kaiserslautern Germany, but if you EVER make it to this country, please make it a point to go to KL and eat at Filippo's.  

If you live in this country, you have no excuse.  Get your bootie over there.  

If you're military and frequent the KMCC, I beg you, please, do not, I repeat, do not eat at Mac Grill.  Take your wife to Filippo's.  You'll win major points.  Trust me, it's worth your Euros.    

If you go in the November-Februaryish time frame, order the Pasta Parmesan.  They swirl hot spaghetti noodles in a giant wheel of parmesan cheese and it is A-MA-ZING!  And the fish is to die for.  All of it.  Oooh, and the Involtini.  And the Minestrone!  And the Salat!

Okay, I have to stop this right now or else I'll never get back on track.  But seriously, come to Germany. Go to Fillipo's. Eat your heart out.  Spare no expense (you can eat Ramen the rest of the week to balance the budget back out).  Do it. It will not disappoint.

Also be sure and go to the local market where ever you are visiting.  I do not recommend doing this in KL however, because, like I said, there's not a whole lot going on there besides a whole lotta Americans and of course Filippo's.  

I do recommend going to the one in Munich though.  There's is incredible as I'm sure most of the bigger city markets are.  That's where I was headed with this post before I got sidetracked...fresh food.

Now, I have to admit, I don't get down to our market here very often.  In fact, almost never.  I just never think about it because 

1. We are out of the city and 
2. I buy my freshness here:

Cölln's Hofladen.

Hofladen = Farm Shop = the real deal = no preservatives, no hormones, no garbage that doesn't belong in your food.  You know, the awesome, natural, way God intended it to be kinda food.  

By now you're wondering, wait, this post has something to with garlic or whatever, what the heck is she talking about?  I'm trying to pull it all together, I promise.  Please bear with me!

Among all the fresh wonderful produce is garlic, lots and lots of garlic.  And I love it.  I really do.  I find myself using garlic most every night in whatever I am cooking.  Especially because my husband has a major aversion to onions.  

It's in our marriage contract: 


Among other things that I will reveal to you at a later date.  While I do break the rule every so often, most the time I try to honor his request by either using onion powder or more often, by substituting a clove of garlic when it calls for onions so as not to lose flavor.  Not the same, I know, but it works for us.

I grew up thinking garlic looked like this.

It doesn't get any more American convenience than this right here.  Ready to use Minced Garlic, value sized.  

Oh America, why do you insist on making everything so ginormous?  Do we really need unnecessarily jumbo sized 48 ounce tubs of stinky garlic that can be passed on from generation to generation just so one will never have to waste his or her time buying another jar of garlic from the store ever again in his or her life?  

If anyone reading this, buys the gigantic tub of garlic, I would really like to know, how long does it take you to use it all?  I am just so fascinated that anyone could ever use that much garlic unless you have a gazillion kiddos!    

Anyway, I can see why my Mom kept this convenient little jar on hand.  The normal sized one, I mean.  Because as much as I love cooking with fresh garlic, it is definitely a time consumer when it comes to whippin' a meal together.  All that smashing and peeling and mincing and smashing and peeling and mincing get the idea.  Work.

Even if I hated using the fresh stuff, I'd be stuck because the only minced garlic I've seen comes in a teeny tiny jar by the spices and stuff.

That is why when I saw this handy little contraption, I knew I had to get one ASAP.   

What is it you ask?  It's a garlic peeling tube thing.  Or as I like to call it, the magic tube. 

And what exactly do you do with this magic tube?  Easy, you put one or two cloves of garlic in the tube, as shown above.  

Then you press your hand firmly on it, roll it back and forth a bit and Voila!  Take a look for yourself. 

Magic.  I'm not kidding.  It has saved me so much time already.  And of course, time is precious around here because my schedule is so jam-packed what with no job, no kids, and no Target to wander around in.  :) 

I hope you read my fun little sarcastic tone in that last statement.

All you little busy bees out there, continue to use your ready to use minced garlic proudly! There's is no need to waste precious minutes peeling garlic if you are going non-stop like my amazing Mom.    

But for those of you who either are:

A. Weirded out by such things or 
B. Don't live in a place that values convenience above anything and everything else or 
C. A dude with a lovely wife who cooks

then get yourself over to Pampered Chef and shell out the $7.50 + shipping for this awesome little kitchen gadget.  Trust me, it's worth it.  

Now see manly men, that wasn't so bad was it?  You have a small little "I was thinking about you cause I'm so freakin in love with you" gift idea and an awesome new restaurant to whisk her off to on your next date night.  You're welcome. :)     


Anonymous said... Best Blogger Tips

I enjoy reading your blogs and I am happy to hear your are enjoying life over in Germany and all that it throws at you. What doesn't kill you makes you stronger. Keep up the blogs.

Deb said... Best Blogger Tips

Another friend saw me use my garlic peeler...she found one at Kaufhof! I think she said E 6,00! Ugh. I will put one in every brides gift basket with a garlic press from now on... :-)

Sarah said... Best Blogger Tips

We love garlic too - but only fresh because the jarred stuff makes your breath smelly! Actually it's really easy to grow where I live, and when it's fresh from your own garden it tastes so incredible. I usually just press down on the clove with the flat part of my knife, which squashes it and the peel usually comes right off.

Sounds like you're having a fresh food adventure in Germany!

Cara said... Best Blogger Tips

That's so cool that you can grow it in your own garden! We, unfortunately, do not have the space for a garden which is too bad because Germany is a great place to grow the spring and summer of course. Winter kills everything off! I've never had much of a "Green Thumb" though so I would probably kill whatever garden I had off myself...although I have managed to keep a basil plant alive for a few months now!

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