How to fix too much garlic. Here are few tips to help out when you've had a garlic attack. I couldn't survive in my kitchen without garlic powder. It means not having to use whole cloves of garlic if you are pushed for time, and it has a great shelf life. There are times; you will have an accident with one of your dried herbs and spices when the lid comes off the container. It happens to the best of us.
I know it is said that less is more. But when the lid comes undone and you accidentally pour a heap full of herb or spice into your dish, that saying goes out the window. Or does it?
Garlic is a wonderful flavoring. At least for those who like it. But even for garlic lovers, but too much of the herb in a dish, it will overpower it. But all it is not lost. If you have an accident when adding garlic powder to a dish, I can tell you about some great ways of getting around it and recovering so that no one is the wiser.
Benefits of garlic
If you know the legend of Count Dracula, you will be only too well aware that his arch-foes, the Van Helsings, often used bulbs of garlic in an attempt to ward off vampires. That is but one of its many benefits. However, garlic dates back to the Greek philosopher Hippocrates, who advocated its use in medicine in all seriousness. It's valid credentials include:
Garlic is low in calories. If you are on a weight-watching diet, it is a handy ingredient in many recipes. Whatever it lacks in terms of calories, it more than makes up for with its nutrient content.
Garlic can be used against illnesses like the common cold. Garlic a useful food additive if you are dieting; it also contains certain elements that can boost your immune system.
According to the Healthline website, garlic can reduce the risk of catching a common cold by an average of 63% and reduce a cold duration by as much as 70%.
Garlic can reduce hypertension and lower levels of cholesterol. There is also solid medical evidence to indicate that garlic can lower blood pressure in people suffering from hypertension and that it also helps to regulate serum cholesterol.
There is also evidence to show that garlic is a well-recognized agent for preventing and treating cardiovascular disease. If you don't already use it, perhaps it's about time you added it into your diet.
What You Need to counteract too much garlic
The first ingredient we are going to look at is the onion. It is another concentrated flavor you can use to balance a garlic-rich taste. Luckily, onion is also an excellent seasoning.
#2 Aromatic Herbs
Aromatic herbs are just what they sound like. Derived from natural, healthy plants, these herbs can add specific spicy aroma and taste notes to any preparation dishes. However, take care not to overdo it as if you do, you can make your dishes taste a little bitter.
#3 Acidic ingredient
Acidic ingredients add a little tartness to any dishes you might be preparing. The most common sources are lemon juice, lime juice, and vinegar. Click here for an interesting article on balancing flavors with an acidic element.
#4 Creamy ingredient
Another good way of balancing the flavor of a "too garlicky" dish is to add ingredients with a creamy texture. These include things like dairy products and coconut milk.
Using sweetening agents such as honey and sugar is another useful way of balancing out an intense garlic flavor.
However, you must take care when adding some sweetener as if you overdo it; it can easily overpower the entire dish.
How to Fix Too Much Garlic: Step-by-Step Guide
Okay, so now you are aware that there, in theory, several ways you can go about counterbalancing a dish that is too heavily flavored with garlic. The next step is to show you exactly how to go about it.
1 Adding Onion, a Concentrated Flavor, to the dish
Our first balancing act involves using onion. Remember, we are dealing with a dish in which the garlic has become the dominant flavor, and not in a good way.
Like garlic, onion is another strong flavor but used in the right proportions. It can counteract too much garlic. The great thing about the taste of onion is that it complements garlic exceptionally well.
But if adding the strong taste of onion to that of the garlic doesn't work for you, then you can choose from some of the other options I list below.
2 Dilute by making another batch
One of the simplest ways you can lessen the influence of garlic's flavor is to make another dish without any garlic in it at all. Then, by adding the two batches together, you reduce the garlic flavor by 50%.
The only difficulty with this is that you are, perhaps, going to have more of the prepared dish than you originally anticipated. However, it's not the worst-case scenario. You can always donate some to your friends or guests, or whatever is leftover can be frozen for use another day.
3 Add a sweetener
If the dish is a casserole, chili, a curry, or a stew, you can always add a little sweetness using brown sugar. Gently does it. Add a smidgen at a time and taste. Again, you don't want to overdo it. You want to get it to the stage where it counterbalances the heat of the garlic.
Don't forget that sweet flavors often intensify when they cool. So, stay on the safe side. Don't add too much. You can always add more a little later if necessary.
4 Add some salt
Salt is another flavoring that can be used to lessen the heat of the garlic. Similarly, garlic and sugar can quickly take over any dish's flavor, so too can salt. So, when you're testing the taste of your garlic-heavy dish, check to see how much saltiness it already has. Add too much, and the dish will be inedible. As before, add a little at a time and test the taste.
5 Add an acidic ingredient
Like everything we talked about so far, less is more. It's all about adding just the right amount to balance the flavor. Lemon or lime juice is preferable, and depending on the dish, even orange juice. If you don't have any of these to hand, you can always add a small quantity of vinegar, but dare I say again? A little time and taste after each addition.
6 Add aromatic herbs and spices
There are many different herbs you can use to try and disguise the flavor of garlic. But be careful as these herbs won't absorb the taste of the garlic. It's all about reaching a nice balance. Overdo it, and your dish could end up tasting entirely different.
To my mind, using fresh parsley is an excellent place to start. It is quite a subtle flavor, and you can therefore add a decent quantity. If that doesn't do it for you, you could try adding cilantro, which works very well with chili and curry. Don't discard the stems. Cut everything up into small shreds, and add everything.
You can try adding other herbs like basil, oregano, and thyme. Just be a little careful because these have a stronger flavor, and again, if you add too much, you might end up changing the taste of the dish, but not in a good way.
7 Simmer the dish on low heat
The alternative idea is to continue to cook the dish, but on a low heat setting. The more you cook garlic, the sweeter it tends to get, and the less harsh.
The thing to beware of is that you don't burn it; if you do, you will get a horrible acrid taste.
8 Rest the dish overnight
It's a well-known fact that casserole-type dishes always taste better when they have been rested overnight. It is not an old wife's tale.
What happens is that the flavors of everything, including the garlic, will mellow overnight. The same goes if you leave it in the fridge for two nights. Time is, they say, is a great healer.
9 Dilute by adding more liquid ingredients
Most casserole-type dishes have ingredients like broth, tomato purée or sauce, and of course, water. Adding more of these liquid elements will help dial down the garlic flavor, but the flavor can become a little bland or taste too much of tomato if you add too much.
If you find you have a too watery dish, you can always remove some of the sauce and either freeze it, refrigerate it, and use it in another dish, another day.
10 Add a creamy ingredient
Adding a creamy element can be an excellent way of reducing the garlic flavor of dishes like Alfredo Sauce, i.e., recipes with milky ingredients. The things you can use include:
- Coconut Cream
- Coconut Milk
- Cow's Milk
- Half and Half Cream
- Full Heavy Cream
11 Add more dressing
If you have made a dressing or have even bought one that tastes too garlicky, you can always damp down the garlic flavor by putting in more of the dressing's base ingredients. These include things like:
- Cream Cheese
- Sour Cream
12 Add a potato
Many grannies pass down to their children and grandchildren to add a potato when a dish is too salty. The truth of the matter is that potatoes can work their magic with things other than salt.
They can bring down any intense flavors, and that includes the taste of too much garlic powder. Dice the potato, cook it in the dish and then remove before serving. It works.
Saving a dish that has had too much garlic added is not rocket science. Below, you will see a few tips to help out when you've had an overzealous garlic attack.
- When the dish is a liquidy one, you can add more liquid to quieten or dilute the garlic's strong taste. If you have a dish that tastes strongly of garlic, but you want to serve it, do so but with complementary sides such as bread, potatoes, or rice. All of these work well with garlic.
- If you have a raw salad that tastes too much of garlic, the best thing to do is to add additional raw ingredients to try and balance out the flavors is a little more.