Chocolate Babka

chocolate babka“Mmmm! Dad, this is probably the best thing we’ve ever made!”

Those were David’s words as he took a bite of the chocolate babka loaf that we’d left cooling for awhile after taking it out of the oven. And sure enough, it was quite amazing to taste – so good that it was not long after that the entire loaf had been devoured.

I had tried making it a couple of weeks earlier, and while it was good, it was not as good as I had hoped it would be. I know why it did not turn out as good as the second time: I did not let the dough warm up to room temperature long enough before putting it in the oven.  When I baked it a second time with my son, I did not make that mistake and the bread came out amazing!

I learned about this bread and how easy it is to make from Peter Reinhart’s video series on Artisan Bread Making. A fantastic course, by the way. I would never have thought to try this if I had not watched Mr. Reinhart make it. Some of my friends, family and acquaintances have seen photos of the finished baked chocolate loaf, and have asked for the recipe, so here goes:

One thing to be noted is that Peter Reinhart’s recipe calls for dark chocolate chips. I did not have those, but we had milk chocolate chips.  Even though we had to substitute the milk chocolate, it still came out very good. As well, you will need to start the dough the night before you want to bake the bread. Be sure to note that there is a recipe for the dough, and a separate recipe for the filling, which you can make just before you want to bake the bread.

Dough Ingredients

  • 3/4 cup Milk
  • 2 Tablespoons Instant Yeast
  • 6 Tablespoons (3 oz) Butter
  • 2 Tablespoons Vegetable Oil
  • 6 Tablespoons Sugar
  • 1 Teaspoon Vanilla Extract
  • 4 Egg Yolks
  • 3 1/3 Cups All-purpose flour
  • 1 Teaspoon Salt

Method for Dough (1st Day):

Heat the milk in a small pot to around 97F. Add the butter, stirring until thoroughly melted. Stir in the oil.

Whisk in the yeast, sugar, vanilla and egg yolks.

In a mixing bowl, add the flour and salt and then stir in the milk mixture. Continue to stir until thoroughly mixed and you should end up with a smooth, soft and sticky dough.

Transfer the dough to a floured or oiled surface where you can stretch and fold it several times. The dough should firm up, when you should then transfer it to a an oiled bowl. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate overnight.

When you are ready to make the loaf the next day, remove it from the refrigerator, and roll out the dough into a 15″ X 15″ square, with the dough about 1/4″ thick.

Filling Ingredients:

  • 2 Cups Chocolate Chips (we used milk chocolate, Mr. Reinhart used dark chocolate)
  • 8 Tablespoons (4 oz) Butter

With the chocolate chips in a mixing bowl, melt the butter and then pour over the chocolate chips. Mix thoroughly, coating all of the chips with melted butter. Some of the chocolate will melt a bit; you do not however need to try to melt them all.

Method To Finish Loaf (2nd Day):

Preheat oven to 325F.

After you have rolled out the dough, pour the chocolate/butter mixture onto the centre of the dough. Spread out leaving about a half inch border on all sides.  After you have evenly spread the filling, begin rolling the dough up, being sure to pinch the ends as you do to prevent the filling from leaking or squeezing out. You’re likely to get some filling on your fingers, and some will possibly squeeze out. Just rub it back into the dough.

After you have completely rolled the dough, cut it in half lengthwise, and then spiral the two parts together.

This will leave you with one very large loaf, or you can divide the dough into two, and bake two loaves in loaf pans.

babka loaf in loaf pan

Loaf resting in loaf pan before putting in oven.

Alternately, you could also bake one full loaf on parchment paper place on a baking sheet.  We decided to do two loaves, each in a loaf pan. If using loaf pans, make sure they are well greased.

Put the loaves in the loaf pans (or on the parchment paper lined sheet) and cover with plastic wrap for an hour before baking.

Peter Reinhart says that if you bake one full size loaf with this recipe (instead of dividing the dough into two), it will take 50 to 60 minutes to bake completely. We found that 35 minutes was perfect with the dough made into two separate loaves.

After baking, allow to cool for half an hour before removing from the loaf pan. It will still be quite warm and will need more time to cool before slicing and eating. You could also glaze the loaves as we did, using a mixture of 2 cups icing sugar, 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract and 1/4 cup of milk.

Enjoy. You will be wanting to make this again, soon!

babka slice

Honey Banana Bread

baked banana loafI sometimes buy too many bananas. Well, more correctly, I don’t eat the bananas I often buy, like I had planned on doing, when I was at the grocery store. Usually, this isn’t a big problem as my son loves bananas at just about any stage of ripeness, but I’m a bit more finicky and once any brown spot develops on the skin, I don’t like to eat them. I prefer them when just as they are starting to ripen up.

My son hasn’t been around for the weekend, so he wasn’t here to eat up the bananas I purchased last week, and that were starting to over ripen for my tastes. But he will be here later this afternoon, and the first thing he does when he arrives is ask for a cup of tea, then wonders aloud if there is any good food for a snack that he can have. So, the kettle is on, while I await his arrival and a loaf of banana bread is cooling on the rack. I didn’t know anything too fancy like add chocolate this time, but I do substitute honey for some of the sugar. And I bake it in a cast iron loaf pan (which I also do meatloaf in – that’s planned for dinner and recipe will follow).

The cast iron gives the loaf a perfect crust, but you should note that I put the loaf pan into the oven while it is pre-heating.  It is greased first, and then allowed to heat up as the oven heats while I am mixing the ingredients.  I think doing it this way (rather than pouring the bread dough into a cold pan and then putting into the oven) goes a long way to a perfect crust as well as reducing the cooking time about five or ten minutes. Most banana loaf bread recipes that I’ve seen call for baking for 60 to 70 minutes, while this is ready in 55 minutes. Your results may vary as not all ovens are the same.

Total preparation time is about ten minutes. You will also want to allow some time for the loaf to cool after you remove it from the oven.

Ingredients:

  • 2 Very Ripe Bananas

    ripe bananas

    When they get too ripe, make them into bread!

  • 1/3 Cup Melted Butter
  • 3/4 Cup Sugar
  • 1/4 Cup Liquid Honey
  • 1 Egg, Beaten
  • 1 Teaspoon Vanilla Extract
  • 1 Teaspoon Baking Soda
  • Pinch of Salt if using Unsalted Butter. If using Salted Butter, you don’t need this.
  • 1 1/2 Cups All Purpose Unbleached White Flour

Method:

Grease loaf pan and place in oven. Pre-heat oven to 350F.

Mash up two peeled bananas in a bowl. Stir in the melted butter, and then the egg. Add sugar, honey and vanilla extract and mix well.

Add salt (if using), and then the baking soda. Stir well before finally mixing in the flour.

You should end up with a thick batter like dough.

With oven mitts, remove the loaf pan from the oven and pour in the dough, smoothing it out with a spatula.  Return the loaf pan to the oven and bake for about 55 minutes. The loaf should have a golden brown crust and you should be able to stick a toothpick into the loaf and pull it out without any dough sticking to the toothpick when fully baked.

Allow to cool for 20 minutes before slicing.

Enjoy! Even though the dough already has butter, I enjoy spreading more onto a slice before eating.

Here’s what the banana bread looks like right out of the oven and still in the loaf pan:

banana loaf in pan

 

Learn Artisan Bread Making

loaves of bread and irish soda farls

David & I Were Busy Today – No Knead Bread, a Pain de Campagne loaf, and Irish Soda Farls

Many years ago, I would admire the wonderful looking loaves of bread that I would come across in bakeries. They had both a visual appeal and that wonderful fresh baked scent, and I’d dream that maybe someday, I’d have the equipment and skills needed to bake such good bread! I had the erroneous belief that baking artisan and bakery quality bread was difficult, if not impossible, in a home kitchen. I thought you’d need special bake ovens, unique and expensive equipment, and thought it would be a lot of work.

While some artisan breads are a lot of work, you can make high quality loaves with basic equipment you have in your home, as well as that regular home kitchen oven.  I’ve been baking a variety of breads for decades, including sandwich loaves, Irish Soda Farls and Wheaten bread, but was afraid of attempting much more than that.

My first venture into trying artisan breads was about ten years ago, with the publication of the “No Knead” bread recipe in a major New York newspaper. Requiring little effort but lots of time, and only a dutch oven to bake it in, the no knead loaf was an immediate hit with guests and friends, and my son and I even baked about 12 loaves in one day for my mom’s wedding!

In the subsequent years, I’ve picked up a couple of amazing books by Peter Reinhart:

The Bread Baker’s Apprentice: Mastering the Art of Extraordinary Bread &

Crust and Crumb: Master Formulas for Serious Bread Bakers

Both are wonderful books with lots of information and teaching and my copies are well used! In fact, I may need to replace them as they are always in my kitchen, have been spilled on, and the pages show much use including wear and tear. But even with these books, sometimes it would be nice to see how things are done, either watching Peter work in person, or perhaps in video.

Well, I discovered some time ago that Peter Reinhart teamed up with a crafts site that provides a variety of courses, and one of those courses is Peter teaching how to bake artisan bread with the use of video. I quickly signed up and have been learning ever since!  The course is wonderful as it provides a medium for being able to visualize what Peter is doing when he bakes his breads, and he is a wonderful teacher as well. The course starts out with an introduction to artisan baking along with important information to understand the entire making, baking, and eating of good quality bread. Peter refers to a 12 step process (yes, the last step is eating the bread!) that makes it easier to know what is going on and what makes a good bread, good.

In addition, the course then covers the following:

  • Country Bread Variation & Shaping Options
  • Rustic Breads including Pain a L’ancienne, Classic Ciabatta, Focaccia, and Mini Baguettes.
  • Enriched Bread including dinner rolls
  • Marble Rye (with a lesson on braiding)
  • Making Babka
  • And Much More!

I tried making the Chocolate Babka for a family Christmas event, and while it did not turn out quite as impressive looking, visually, as Peter’s did, I was quite pleased with the many comments about how good it tasted! It was my first time attempting at such a rich bread with chocolate (although Peter uses semi-sweet dark chocolate chips but all I had on hand were milk chocolate chips).

If you are interested in learning techniques for artisan bread baking (or improving on your present skills), I highly recommend this course:

Artisan Bread Making

I know you’ll love the course! Peter is a wonderful instructor, and the course also comes with downloadable resources in PDF format that you can print, including recipes and instructions.

Related:

 Improved Northern Irish Soda Farl

The Trouble With Wheat

Currant Soda Farls

French Pain de Campagne

 

 

 

French Pain de Campagne

pain de campagne bread loaf“David, would you like to do some baking today?”

“Yeah! Yeah! Yeah!”

Even though he is now 12, he still responds the same way as he did when he was 4 years old and excited about doing something. “Yeah! Yeah! Yeah!” is an indication that he’s going to be totally interested and will be expecting that his help will be needed, or at least desired. Yesterday and today were no different. It actually started Friday night, when I came across a video of Canadian Dale Calder preparing and baking his style of a French Pain de Campagne loaf. Mr. Calder however, used a multi-grain flour, which I did not have on hand, and the traditional loaf would have used a white flour anyhow.

But nevertheless, it looked interesting and after watching the video with me, David decided it was something he definitely wanted to try.  I should point out that it was quite the busy day for us, as he and I also baked a “no knead loaf” that we also started Friday night, and while David pigged out on my fermented garlic (he eats it like it’s candy to him), we made labneh coated with oregano and basil, and covered with  olive oil. Yes, we make our own yogurt as well…

But getting back to the Pain de Campagne loaf, we started out pretty much following Dale Calder’s recipe and method, at least for the poolish, but when it was time to mix water and flour with the poolish, we had to diverge a bit, in the amount of flour we used. We had to increase the flour quite a bit, and perhaps this is because we were using white bread flour, while he was using multi-grain. But following his directions, we ended with a very very wet and sticky dough that was just crying out for more flour.

If you’re going to try this bread, be prepared – you need to start it the night or afternoon before you bake it, and it is a bit more work than the “no knead” bread. However, like the “no knead” bread, Dale Calder shows how to do this loaf in a Dutch Oven, which is what I bake my no knead (and some other) loaves of bread in.

So here are the steps:

Poolish (Prepared Night Before You Bake):

  • 1 1/2 cups white bread flour (for this, we used Robin Hood brand of bread flour – I’m sure King Arthur all purpose unbleached will work fine).
  • 1 cup luke warm water
  • 1/4 teaspoon instant rise yeast.

I like to mix the yeast into the water and let it dehydrate for a few minutes first. I know many bakers simply add all the dry ingredients together, but when it comes to salt and yeast, I prefer to add them to the water that will be poured into the dough.

Anyhow, whatever you choose, mix all of the above ingredients in a bowl and cover with plastic wrap. Put in a warm place – an ideal temperature is 75F or above – but not too hot. Mr. Calder puts his in the oven with the oven light on. I wouldn’t do that as when I leave my oven light on, the oven will reach a temperature of 110F or a bit higher – perfect for making yogurt, but a bit too warm for bread making in my opinion.

Leave for a minimum of 16 hours to allow the fermentation to take place – time is a wonderful element that brings out flavours in bread, wine, and many things!

By the way, a poolish is a “sponge” that is used in French bread making, and is usually around equal amounts of water to flour.  Italian style baking will often call for a sponge that is referred to as a “biga,” but is not as wet as a poolish. Why is it called a “poolish?” Well, although it is often associated with French style bread making, it was actually originally a Polish method that was introduced to France – hence the name “poolish.”

Bread Dough (The Next Day):

I’ll list Mr. Calder’s ingredients and then comment where we changed a couple of things…

  • 1 cup of poolish (after stirring the poolish and getting air out)
  • 1 heaping teaspoon of Himalayan salt (Mr. Calder uses one level teaspoon – but with Himalayan, because it’s not pure salt but also contains additional minerals, I’ll add a bit extra).
  • 1/4 teaspoon of instant rise yeast
  • 1 cup of lukewarm water
  • 1 1/2 cups of flour (we found that this was not nearly enough however).
  • A tablespoon or so of olive oil (or other oil – you don’t need to use olive oil if you don’t have it).
loaves of bread and irish soda farls

David & I Were Busy Today – No Knead Bread, a Pain de Campagne loaf, and Irish Soda Farls

Transfer 1 cup of poolish to another clean bowl. Add salt and yeast to water, and stir well, so the salt is dissolved. Add water to the 1 cup of poolish, and stir well, breaking up the poolish as best you can. This could take several minutes.

Stir in 1 cup of flour into the poolish and water mixture. In Mr. Calder’s method, he reserved 1/2 a cup for flouring his wooden board that he kneaded the bread on. We found that we needed to add the full 1 1/2 cups of flour to the poolish and water mixture, and then needed even more flour to dust the board as well as to knead into the bread dough. Probably a good 1/2 cup more, but we did not measure it.

Basically, we kneaded flour into the dough until it was slightly tacky, and then kneaded another 15 minutes.  And this is where David shone! “Is it my turn to knead it now, Dad? My turn!” 🙂

At first, because the dough is wet and sticky, Mr. Calder uses a “baker’s knife” to assist with scraping the dough from the surface. I have a nice sized cleaver that does the job equally as well 🙂

After kneading for 15 or so minutes, put a small amount of oil into the bottom of another clean bowl (large enough to allow for the dough to double in size).

Form the dough into a ball shape and coat it with the oil in the bottom of the bowl, and then coat the sides of the bowl.

Cover with plastic wrap and leave in a warm place for about 2 hours and allow the dough to rise.

After two hours, punch out the air out of the dough, remove it from the bowl and put it on a floured surface and knead for about five minutes, before forming it back into a ball shape.   After the dough has been worked back into a ball shape, place it on a large size piece of parchment paper – large enough that you will use the parchment paper to pick the dough up, and then put it all.. parchment paper and dough, into the Dutch oven.

Cover dough with a damp tea towel and allow dough to rest for 30 minutes, and it will also rise during this time.

After 30 minutes, press out the air, and knead another few minutes before shaping the dough into a ball, and once again, place back on the parchment paper and cover with a damp tea towel. I let the dough rise another 90 minutes.

After one hour, preheat oven to 500F and put Dutch oven into the oven to heat up as well. After another 30 minutes, remove the damp tea towel from the dough, and cut into the dough with a sharp knife – make two cuts along the sides and then two more crossing the two you made, across the top and bottom.

Remove the Dutch oven (be careful, it’s very hot – best to put it on top of your stove), and then grasp the corners of the parchment paper, and lower it and the dough into the Dutch Oven.

Now, to get the effect of steam while the bread is cooking, get about a 1/4 cup of VERY hot water. If you are using cast iron, do NOT use cold water!  Cold water and hot cast iron do not go well together – if you’re water is cold, you could cause the cast iron Dutch oven to break. So get as hot as water as you can, close to boiling, and gently pull on the parchment paper so that you can pour the 1/4 cup of water directly into the Dutch oven. NOT on the bread.

Put a lid on the Dutch oven, return it to the oven and cover with a lid.

Bake for 30 minutes. After 30 minutes, remove the lid from the Dutch oven and bake another five minutes.

This seems like a lot of work, but it’s not. In fact, the most time you will need to be doing any work is during the phase when you mix the poolish with the other ingredients and knead for about 15 minutes. All of the other steps only take a few minutes, while you let time do most of the work for you.

I highly recommend you watch Mr. Calder’s video to understand the process, and bear in mind the differences noted above as my son and I used white bread flour, while Mr. Calder was using a multi-grain flour.

If you decide to try this yourself, please let David and I know your results! And anything you might have done differently, as well!

Homemade Bread Crumbs

bread crumb making with rolling pinI seldom think to ever purchase bread crumbs at the supermarket or grocery store, so sometimes when I come across a recipe that calls for them, I have none.  A couple of weeks ago when I made my son meatballs was one such occasion. Today, while making Jamaican Beef Patties was another occasion. So.. what can you do?

There are two solutions to not having bread crumbs from a grocery store on hand. The first one is a “premium” or best solution, while the second will do in a pinch.

The Best Homemade Bread Crumbs

If bake your own bread, this is the best – but you don’t need homemade bread for this to work.  It’s pretty easy and you could use this method to make up a large batch of breadcrumbs that you can store in the freezer in a zip lock bag. Or, you can make up just enough, as needed.

What you will need to do is take slices of bread and place them on a cookie sheet. Don’t put them on top of each other, however.  Preheat your oven to 300F. When the oven has reached 300, put the cookie sheet with the bread slices into the oven for ten minutes.

After ten minutes, turn the slices over and return to the oven for another five minutes or so.  Check that your bread slices are dry and have no moisture left in them.  You don’t want to toast the bread – just dry it out.

At this point, you have a couple of options.

1. Break up the bread into smaller pieces and put them into a blender.  Turn on the blender until you have the desired consistency of bread crumbs. In a pinch, you can also use a coffee bean grinder after the bread slices have been broken into smaller pieces.   For me, it’s handy to just throw the bread slices into a zip lock bag to break them up all at once into smaller pieces before putting them in the blender.

2. If you don’t have a blender or coffee bean grinder, you can also use the rolling pin method. My 11 year old son enjoys this. Simply break up the pieces by hand, while they are inside the zip lock bag, as small as you can, and then take a rolling pin over it all several times. You won’t get a consistent crumb size most likely but you’ll end up with something suitable.

For variety, you could try different types of bread including whole grain, or flavoured breads such as roasted garlic as well, for your bread crumbs.

Doable Homemade Bread Crumbs

If you need a small amount of bread crumbs quickly, and don’t have any bread slices you want or can dry out, you can use soda crackers. Either salted or unsalted will work (most breads that I would use already have salt added).  Soda crackers can make for a great bread crumb substitution, especially in a recipe that calls for only a small amount such as 1/4 cup.  They are very easy to crumble into a bread crumb like texture and work quite fine.

So there you go – you have no excuses for not making something you want because it calls for bread crumbs, but you don’t have any on hand.  You could of course think ahead and make up several cups worth ahead of time as well. Simply store them in the zip lock bag in the freezer.

Do you have any other substitutions for bread crumbs that you make yourself?

 

An Improved Northern Irish Soda Farl

brodie self raising cake pastry flourThe title of this is a bit misleading; it would be difficult to improve upon the simplicity and taste of an Irish soda farl the way it’s been made for a couple of centuries a more.  Three or four simple ingredients, the right amount of heat, and you end up with a very tasty bread “cake” that is delicious hot off the griddle and slathered with melting butter.

However, as pointed out in this post, “The Trouble With Wheat,” North American wheat is not the same as Irish wheat. As a result, using all-purpose flour in North America will not provide you with a soda farl that is nearly the same as those you might find in Ireland, either in the south or North.

There is a way around this however, for those of us in North America who want to replicate the taste and texture as close as possible to the real thing. And that is instead of using All-Purpose Flour, use Cake and Pastry Flour. It is a bit more expensive but the end result is a better soda farl in North America.

In my original recipe for the Irish soda farl, here, it simply calls for flour.  Elsewhere, I’ve written about the improvement of using cake and pastry flour – however, I’ve been using something that is even an improvement upon that!

In Canada in many grocery stores, a brand of flour called “Brodie” is available that is a “Self Raising” cake and pastry flour. What this means is that it already has the salt and baking soda (or baking powder which contains baking soda) mixed in and pre-sifted.

For the person longing for a genuine Irish style soda farl, it means the only other ingredient you need is buttermilk. You don’t have to worry about sifting baking powder or soda and salt with your flour and it makes it that much easier to make the farls.

flour in mixing bowl

Self Raising Cake & Pastry Flour In Mixing Bowl

In fact, it is so easy that I do not even bother measuring the ingredients when I make soda farls with this flour! All I do is basically eye up the quantity of flour as I pour it into a mixing bowl, make a well in the flour, and pour in buttermilk and start mixing.  If I’ve not added enough buttermilk, I’ll splash a bit more in until the dough is the right consistency.  If I’ve added too much buttermilk (which is rare), all I have to do is sprinkle in flour into the dough until the correct consistency has been achieved.

It’s that easy that even my 11 year old son can do it and there is no need for measuring cups or measuring spoons.

However, if you insist on a recipe, it’s pretty close to:

  • 2 cups Self Raising Cake & Pastry Flour
  • 1 cup Buttermilk
Image

Pour Buttermilk Into “Well” Made In The Flour

But even this is a guideline. Sometimes, flour will be drier than at other times, and a bit more buttermilk will be needed. What is better than simply following a recipe is  getting to know the consistency of the dough that you like to make soda farls with.  Once you have that down, you’ll never need to measure ingredients as long as you are using self raising cake and pastry flour.

I do not know if Brodie XXX Self Raising Cake & Pastry flour is available outside of Canada, so what do you do if you don’t live there?

Simple – get Homepride Self Raising Flour From Amazon.  But this does not contain salt so you may want to consider adding some if you enjoy your soda farls a touch on the savoury side.

More Reading:

Northern Irish Soda Farls

The Trouble With Wheat

Currant Soda Farls

Home Made Garlic Bread Is So Easy

I’m sometimes surprised how many people will go out and purchase a loaf of prepared garlic bread from the grocery store instead of making their own. It is such an easy thing to make at home and the nice thing is you can control how much garlic you use.

Indeed, I find most of the grocery store loaves to be usually quite short on both butter and garlic.  And there may be fancier ways to make it, but one of the dumbest things I can ask my son is, “Hey, would you like garlic bread?” I mean… I already know the answer. I just ask the question for the joy in watching the little dance he does as well as the exclamations of “Yes Dad! Yes Dad! Yes Dad!” over and over.

I have to admit that generally, I keep my recipe pretty simple although at times cheese will also be added. Use your favourite. Some like parmesan; my son loves medium cheddar melted on top of his garlic bread.  I know that some people will also mix in a little olive oil and parsley into the garlic spread that goes onto the bread.

There is one little tool that I have that makes the mincing of the garlic much easier in my opinion. More on that shortly.

Of course, many people will associate garlic bread with an Italian loaf.  Well, if you’ve enjoyed baking your own bread, and have looked at the “No Knead Bread” recipe I posted, I think you might agree that this bread makes for a wonderful garlic spread! It is the bread that is generally used in my house (although this evening, we ran out of this bread and found surprisingly delicious results, using our Irish Soda Farls, here.

So what’s the recipe for the garlic spread?

  • 1/2 cup of softened butter
  • 6 medium sized minced garlic cloves.

You of course could use a higher ratio of garlic if you want (or conversely, a lower ratio).

I just simply thoroughly mix the minced garlic into the butter, spread on slices of bread, and then put them on a pan that is set on the second highest rack level in my oven.  The oven is turned to broil, and they are done in about 8 minutes or so. You may want to keep an eye on it the first time you try it as all ovens are different.

For a variation, I will slice medium cheddar cheese and add that to the bread that is broiling in the oven, about a minute or two before the garlic bread will be ready.

It’s really that simple! Now.. I mentioned an awesome took for mincing garlic…

Best Garlic Mincer

ImageAbout five years ago, I picked this awesome tool up at a local shop that sells kitchen, cooking and baking supplies and I’ve never gone back to using anything else for mincing garlic. It is called a “Garlic Twist” and makes mincing of garlic cloves so easy, with no waste, and so easy to clean up. When you’re done, you just rinse under a tap and then wash and dry. I can mince four or five cloves of garlic at once easily, and simply twisting the cloves through the teeth inside the Garlic Twist gets the job done. When you are finished, you simply pass the teeth through each other by twisting back and forth, and you’ve got minced garlic that isn’t stuck in anything and no holes to clean out.

It’s an ingenious little tool that for me is really worth having with all the garlic that I will mince in a week for meals.

If you’re tired of trying to clean a garlic press, and not sure what to replace your press with – I can highly recommend this to you. It’s virtually unbreakable, and as I wrote above, so easy to clean and doesn’t take up much space at all in the drawer.

You can get it here at Amazon – and I know you will be happy you did!  Garlic Twist.