I absolutely love garlic, especially with sauteed onions! I've been using garlic almost everyday in my dinner and I have been wondering what the difference between minced garlic and garlic powder. I know that they are not equivalent in terms of proportions - a tsp. of minced garlic and a tsp of garlic powder are not equal in intensity/taste. But when does one use garlic powder, and when does one use minced garlic?
Minced garlic is fresh garlic that has been finely chopped and crused and "minced" if you will. Garlic powder has been dried and turned into a dry powder.
As to when you use either or, it's a personal preference or the preference of the one writing the recipe. I almost always use minced or chopped fresh garlic (or the kind you buy in the jar) in most stir fries and sauces rather than powdered.
I would think if you come across a recipe that calls for powder you could use fresh minced to your own taste. I don't know the conversion though.
I love garlic and put it lots of stuff. Like you, when I fry something
like tempeh, I like onions and garlic. I would always uses fresh garlic.
Get yourself a garlic press and it is easy to crush. You do have to
peal the the garlic, but it is not really to much work.
I would recommend (for a garlic press) either a Susi, which is all
aluminum and made in Switerland. Or a Henckel. Don't get the Henckel
International press (made in Japan), get the German one. I had a
Japanese one and the handle broke. Thus Susi is great and very strong and
you can actually crush the garlic with out having to peal it, but the
press is hard to clean out well. The Henckel requires you peal the cloves, but is very easy to clean
but is easier to clean. I most use my Henkel.
Another idea to have fresh-minced garlic always on hand is the following: Buy about a half-pound or more of bulk garlic heads. Clean and peel all the cloves, then toss them in a blender or food processor with about 1/2 c. to 1 cup olive or other vegetable oil. (Quantity will depend on the size of the cloves). Puree until smooth and place in a container in the freezer. The oil will not freeze completely but the garlic will stay fresh. Dip out howe'ver much you need.
You can of course do this with howe'ver much garlic you care to process at one time. I don't know how garlic is sold in the States, it used to come in boxes with 2 little heads in. We buy it in bulk here but then we produce it.
I use fresh garlic whenever possible. And Brad is right -- get yourself a good garlic press. Mine is an OXY. When I don't have fresh garlic, I use garlic granules. They are more intenese than garlic powder. I sprinkle garlic grans on pizza, baked spuds, in dips, just about everything. It also makes a nice garlic butter -- mix into a cube of room temperature Earth Balance along with a little bit of nutritional yeast. Yum.
yabbitgirl... there was a discussion awhile back about storing minced garlic in oil... apparently a toxic bacterial can form when you do this (perhaps this is why you keep your oil/garlic in the fridge???). Just a heads up, you may want to do some research about this.
About garlic presses... I have no idea what brand mine is... probably just a cheapy I picked up at Zellers... It came with a little plastic do-hicky, which has a bunch of little pockys, to help clean the press. Maybe this is something to look for?
K2, you're right, that's why you keep it in a covered container in the Freezer. The oil doesn't freeze but the garlic stays in suspended animation and also there isn't the smell to deal with which you might have in the fridge.
Brad, I just had to go check and see which garlic press I have. I indeed have a Susi - made in Switzerland. I've had it for years, it hasn't rusted or broken with my heavy-handed press.