Garlic Across the Ages

For thousands of years and throughout many ancient cultures, garlic has been used to add flavor to food and to heal. And, the first historical records indicate garlic’s importance and it was even found in Egyptian pyramids and Greek temples. Garlic was looked at as a useful way to heal many ailments in China, India and Egypt. Garlic was said to assist with toothaches, coughs, arthritis, insect bites and maybe even a vampire. It was used as a widely used way to treat a large variety of health issues during the medieval era. And even today, its use as a folk medicine carries on.

Growing Garlic

Garlic is an easy crop to harvest and it grows throughout the whole year in climates that are mild. When fully grown, garlic plants can climb up to 4 feet high. One garlic head typically contains 10-20 cloves. What makes garlic so excellent at healing is called Allicin, a compound found in garlic. Allicin is created if fresh garlic is crushed or chopped. Along with garlic’s healing properties, garlic is widely known as a great method to add flavor lots of various meals. Although, here in America, garlic was not always as beloved as it is currently. English people very rarely used garlic for any uses besides a folk medicine and carried that attitude with them when they came to America. It took nearly 300 years for garlic to become more common but lucky for us it’s added to food everywhere. The next day you have a dish with garlic, take a moment to think about its long and storied history.