Food Safety - Storing Minced Garlic

Discussion in 'Food Safety' started by rabbithutch, Sep 11, 2013.

  1. rabbithutch

    rabbithutch Master of the Pit OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    To the Admins: If I've posted this in the wrong place, please chastise me and move where it should be.

    I can never chop just the right amount of garlic, so I usually mince and entire head - sometimes more - and store what I don't use in the reefer in a tightly sealed bottle with EVO oil covering it. I then use from this stash when I cook. My questions are: 1) Is this a bad practice (and, if so, why)? and 2) How long is it safe to keep in this manner if it has not gone off color?

    TIA
     
  2. I'm no expert but I know infused oils can become contaminated with botulism. Botulinum is found in soil, so garlic etc is prone to it and storing it in oil creates an anaerobic environment which is what produces the toxin. I know storing it in the reefer slows down the production. On the other hand botulism is a lot rarer than most think, you can look up the number of cases per year and presumed causes, its real low, almost lottery winner low, and typically fermented fish heads and things like that are the cause, but oil infusions have caused it as well. Either way it's definitely something to take seriously and give thought too. Not sure how best to store it but it seems like the minced you buy in a jar is always in water (from what I've seen) and there is probably a reason for it. As always YMMV.
     
  3. daveomak

    daveomak Smoking Guru OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    RH, afternoon....... Just to be on the safe side, after chopping, I would store the left over garlic in a container in the freezer....  If you want garlic oil, ChefJJ educated me in it's storage.....   place garlic in oil in a pan, heat on the stove to 180 ish for a while to "sterilize" for lack of a better word, cool, place in the fridge for up to 2 weeks or so in a sealed bottle........

    Dave
     
  4. Storing (un-acidified) chopped garlic in oil, even in the fridge, is not considered good practice.
    It's okay to keep it in the freezer (blech!) but you're really better off only chopping what you need and leaving the rest in cloves and out of oil.
    Some suggest that it's okay to keep garlic in oil in the fridge for up to a week (at less than 38 degrees) but why take a risk?
    Yes, cases of botulism are very rare among the general population, but once you do something risky your chances of facing disaster may increase dramatically.


    ~Martin
     
  5. daveomak

    daveomak Smoking Guru OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    .....[​IMG].......   be safe, really safe.....
     
  6. Just a heads up, botulinum is the major threat when storing garlic in oil and that would do nothing to guard against botulinum because it isn't hot enough to reduce the spores to a safe level.


    ~Martin

    This is a good point. Thanks for bringing it up...Since this is true, it becomes imperative that Garlic stored in this way be kept below 38*F and only used in food to be Cooked at high temp like Sauteing...Thanks again...JJ
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Oct 24, 2013
  7. daveomak

    daveomak Smoking Guru OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    Got it....... Now if I can just remember it.....   [​IMG]  ....
     
  8. cmayna

    cmayna Master of the Pit OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    Ok since I use tons of garlic when doing my smoked Salmon, I normally mince up 3-4 bulbs worth in my mini food processor, use what I need and put the extra in a snack zip lock bag rolling it out like a cigar, expelling the extra air and then freezing it.

    When I need a clove or two worth of it later, I break off a chunk of the cigar and thaw it for immediate usage. Is this not safe? No oil used.



    Tapayakin' from my iphone
     
  9. disco

    disco Smoking Guru OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    If you want to save a bunch of garlic, you can pickle it in vinegar and can it. The vinegar adds some flavour to a clove of garlic but not as much as you think it would. You can cook with the pickled garlic but I add more because it is a little milder after canning. It is as safe as any other pickled vegetable.

    Disco
     
  10. s2k9k

    s2k9k AMNPS Test Group

    OK I'm curious now. They sell minced garlic in olive oil in the grocery store and it's not even refrigerated, how do they do that?
     
  11. daveomak

    daveomak Smoking Guru OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    If you read the label, there's probably potassium metabisulfite and some kind of acid in it....  Not sure..... just a guess.....
     
  12. daveomak

    daveomak Smoking Guru OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    There's the answer......
     
  13. It has phosphoric acid, lactic acid, ascorbic acid or citric acid and the like or a combination of acids added to reduce the pH to a level that's inhospitable to botulinum.


    ~Martin
     
  14. s2k9k

    s2k9k AMNPS Test Group

    Yep, phosphoric acid.

    I have the one in water, thought I had the olive oil.
     
  15. GaryHibbert

    GaryHibbert Smoking Guru OTBS Member ★ Lifetime Premier ★

    RH
    What do you mean, you chop up too much garlic?? There is no such thing as too much garlic. No vampires around our house.
    Gary
     
  16. rabbithutch

    rabbithutch Master of the Pit OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    You are right, Gary! There is no such thing as too much garlic, but sometimes I chop up more than I will use. I hate to chop just one or two cloves because it seems like so much clean up effort for such a little garlic; so I usually do a whole bulb or sometimes two.

    I got the idea to store it in oil from the minced garlic in the supermarket, but I think the suggestion to freeze it a la a cigar roll is the way I'll do it in the future.

    Thank you to all who responded. I knew that I would get definitive and correct advice from you guys!

    BTW: If any admins are listening, don't you think it would be a good idea to have a forum for Food Safety Issues?
     
  17. daveomak

    daveomak Smoking Guru OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    Last edited: Sep 12, 2013
  18. rabbithutch

    rabbithutch Master of the Pit OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    Doh! (as he slaps himself solidly in the middle of the forehead with the heel of his hand!)

    Don't know how I missed that except to say that it has happened a lot more since passing into my 8th decade. :devil:

    Dave, I created a poll in the Community forum asking this question. Could you or someone delete it for me, please.
     
    Last edited: Sep 12, 2013
  19. cmayna

    cmayna Master of the Pit OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    I was also wondering why this thread has'nt been moved to the Safety board. That's where I kept looking for it.

    Why I freeze my extra garlic? Because I hope to have minced enough extra for my next smoke out.


    Tapayakin' from my iphone
     
  20. cmayna

    cmayna Master of the Pit OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    Here's some garlic, minced, rolled and frozen. With a chunk already missing.
    [​IMG]


    Tapayakin' from my iphone
     
    Last edited: Sep 14, 2013

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