The other day at a friend’s house I had the opportunity to browse through a recent issue of Mother Earth News. You may think I would be an avid reader, if not subscriber, of this valuable homesteading magazine. After all, I am one of their “experts” (see I’m an Expert—Just Ask Me!). In truth, I rarely see it. The article that caught my eye included suggestions for boosting the flavor and nutrient value of raw foods.
Of the many helpful suggestions, one stood out. It suggested that one of the most significant healing properties of garlic is a two part chemical reaction that only takes place when a garlic clove gets damaged—cut, pressed, chewed, etc.—so the parts can combine. This process takes 10 minutes to reach full strength, and stops if the garlic comes in contact with high heat. They therefore recommend processing your meal’s garlic early, so that it can be set aside for 10 minutes before cooking.
Since reading this, I’ve reshuffled my meal preparation. I worried a bit about adding yet another 10 minutes to our scratch meal making, but if I can remember to process the garlic first, I find that other preparations fill much of the time, even though typically, sautéeing onions and garlic is the first step in most of our better meals. We may never know for sure whether or not we’re gaining significant benefits from this practice, but it’s worth a try.
I also picked up a great term from the magazine that describes the way we live on the “homestead.” I like their use of “wiser living.” It implies that we’re working toward something better, but not necessarily all the way there yet. To paraphrase Mark Twain, it’s a good term; it bears repeating!