Garlic harvest update

Before we left for vacation, I finally got around to trimming and cleaning up my garlic harvest. I trimmed all the tops and roots, and separated out the largest/healthiest looking cloves for fall planting.  The largest clove barely fit in the palm of my hand!

I stored it in a seed flat tray and a wire basket in Kyle’s old bedroom, the coolest/darkest room in the house.

I don’t think I picked all of it at the right time, it looks to me as though the Chesnok Red should have been pulled a bit earlier? The cloves had begun to separate and pull apart, and the paper covering was cracked away from the cloves.  I will sort through it all to use such cloves first.

I’m not really sure how well it will keep, and thus have been mulling over the idea pickling it to preserve it for cooking — I’m just not sure how this will impact the taste in cooking.  If you’ve tried this, please let me know how it worked for you — or if you have any other suggestions for long term storage.

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9 Responses to “Garlic harvest update”

  1. Robin Says:

    Hmm, I have never tried that but it sounds interesting. Last year I think I picked some of my garlic too late. I ended up running out of garlic some time this spring and only at the very end did I have some starting to go bad. I think it was mostly just at the end of it’s storage life though.

  2. meemsnyc Says:

    I didn’t grow any garlic this year, but definitely want to try it.

  3. vrtlaricaana Says:

    Those cloves are big! I have never seen something like that.
    I don’t know about storage unfortunately, as this is my first year growing garlic. But I have been told that garlic that is planted in early spring will store better, but it will grow smaller cloves – that is for sure.

  4. mangochild Says:

    I love garlic because it starts growing almost overnight so the green shoots and scapes are there to enjoy. And then the heads carry on the process in storage. Last year, I braided/dried mine and hung them for storage. I haven’t tried pickling it though.

  5. kate@livingthefrugallife Says:

    I wait until until it shows signs of starting to sprout, then slice it and dehydrate it. It’ll keep very well that way in a sealed jar on a pantry shelf. Also, you can put it in a pepper mill and crack it in that state. I’ve heard of garlic confit – basically whole cloves poached in olive oil. But I haven’t tried that. Do NOT store raw garlic in oil – botulism risk.

    By the way, garlic responds to temperature. So put it in a cool place that will not warm up significantly for as long a period as possible. Only bring what you need for the next few days into the kitchen. It’s okay if you put it somewhere that will get progressively cooler over the next few months. But the storage temperature should either be cool and stay cool, or be cool and get cooler.

  6. upinak Says:

    Don’t pickle! Can it! Mince it and do it that way. Pickling can make it taste very odd.

    You have done much better then I did this year as the rain overwhelmed and the rootmaggots got to them. Good for you!

  7. Daphne Says:

    I’ve never pickled garlic, but have put garlic in my pickle solution. The garlic tends to be milder than when it was put in.

  8. Sara Says:

    My backup plan for storage problems is to dehydrate it, and maybe chop/freeze some. Pickling is an interesting idea too, I guess I’d try them all and see what you like the best :)

    It does seem like a hard year for storage, all the rain has been hard on the bulb crops. My garlic is doing okay so far, but I did start running a dehumidifier in our basement for a bit as it got really damp. My onions are not doing very well down there.

  9. Jen Says:

    Our best cold storage area is about 50 deg F – not as cold as I’d like, but the garlic keeps very well. Ours usually starts to sprout in spring (april-May), when we roast it, then keep the roasted garlic in the fridge – it seems to last fine for a month or more. At that point we usually switch to garlic scapes, then start pulling new garlic. et voila! 12 months of garlic.

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