GARLIC KNUCKLE-DUSTER

WE EAT A LOT OF GARLIC. I’m old enough and white enough to remember the days when, If someone had had, say, a curry the night before, everyone would comment on the smell. I can still remember how exotic and delightful the taste was when I first used it when I left home and started cooking for myself – we would NEVER have had it at home when I was growing up.

Describing how alien garlic was to the British working class tastebuds would now seem almost unbelievable. I think its absence from British food until relatively recently was due to the Protestant fear of inflaming the passions. I’ve always quite liked the smell on other people, to be honest, and have never really given a shit if I sail around on a garlicy waft myself, or indeed if my passions become inflamed.

Along with flossing my teeth, filling the car with petrol and unloading the dishwasher, I find crushing garlic a bit of a ball-ache. Getting the skins off, chopping, mincing…not a major ball-ache, but just a rather tedious element of cooking, a process I otherwise enjoy greatly.

I own a traditional hinged garlic press, which I never use, because of the large amount of uncrushed garlic which remains inside, making it both inefficient and a pain in the arse to clean. I also own a pestle and mortar, which is good for grinding a few cloves down with salt. Mostly, though, I’d just use my knife to finely chop and/or puree it with a little salt.

Until recently that is, when I saw an advert for this little tool. It’s basically a garlic crushing knuckle duster which makes short work out of garlic crushing, either with salt or without, but also rinses off very easily afterwards. I bought mine from AliExpress for about $6 I think, and have used it regularly ever since. It also easily rinses clean under the tap after use.

A quick bit of internet research tells me that our current unelected head of state doesn’t eat garlic. Although this is probably a generational thing, it also turns out that lizards hate garlic. I’ll leave you to form your own conclusions.